For a better experience on MUBI, update your browser.
Critics reviews
In the Mood for Love
Wong Kar-wai Hong Kong, 2000
A film that ripples with textures and sensual energy as the camera becomes preoccupied with small gestures: the rattling of mahjong tiles, the way fabric bends, hands leaning on a tabletop. It is a film where absence is infused with beauty, poetry and romance.
October 30, 2018
Read full article
The film is pregnant with the overwhelming feeling of infatuation, executed in a lusciousness that recalls something from a dream. But for every restraint there is a counterpoint in excess: Maggie Cheung’s many gorgeous dresses are as flamboyant as they are confining; the musical score is both pitch-perfect and overwhelming, familiar and foreign; the cinematography is so rich and meticulous that its multitude of color is evocative of Douglas Sirk’s melodramas.
February 15, 2013
Read full article
IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE (2000, 98 min, 35mm) represents Wong at his most deliberate extreme but also serves as a quite palatable introduction.
November 30, 2012
Read full article
What seems conspicuously “indistinct” about In the Mood for Love—the pervasive sense of simplicity that governs the drama, from the convenience of its setup to the vagueness of what proceeds from it—becomes, in retrospect, a sophisticated expression of the fundamentally abstract quality of memory and reflection, not so much a paean to past love as to past love remembered in the present.
November 05, 2012
Read full article
Like the other Hong Kong directors of his time, Wong imbues everything the West regards as film cliché with a new glamour and fervor; but whereas in the cinema of John Woo and Tsui Hark this romanticism lurks behind an operatic violence, in Wong’s films love is never merely a distraction or a motivation or a fleeting promise of redemption but the dominating conflict.
October 02, 2012
Read full article
What I hadn’t fully realized about In the Mood for Love [on the first viewing] was the extent to which Wong fringes his devastating beauty with self-critique. Glamorizing the past is another feeble attempt at controlling what can’t be controlled, yet it’s a human impulse that’s as reliable as heartbreak. I can think of no movie that better or more elegantly embodies this futility than In the Mood for Love. By its very design it only cuts deeper as it ages—and as I age.
December 29, 2009
Read full article
Director Wong Kar-wai, Hong Kong’s most romantic filmmaker, is known for his excesses, and in that sense the film’s spareness represents a bold departure.
January 02, 2001
Read full article