In the Mood for Love (2000)

In The Mood for Love
might be Wong Kar-wai's magnum opus. In this, he crafts intimacy in the most delicate way. In only the briefest of moments, a friendship is born. Soon, that blossoms into a deeper connection through a common purpose. Both Chow and Su have a mutual understanding, that they will not become their other halves. However, love is a fickle emotion and eventually, they find themselves in that very dilemma.

Kar-wai chooses not to be explicit about the happenings in this film, instead the revelations surface through conversations between the two leads. Even between them, things are implied but never fully acknowledged. The line between reality and fiction become blurred as they attempt to carve out a fantasy of their own making.

Christopher Doyle is also to be given equal credit for his work in this. Shots are framed as if peeking through a crack in the door, intruding on a private moment. Often the camera lingers outside, acting like one would as a mere observer. Some shots just also pure beauty, moving slowly while the score plays along it. A big part of this film relies on the aesthetics, and perhaps it's what keeps it etched in our minds.

In The Mood for Love certainly feels like a film which gets better on a rewatch. Not just for the sake of appreciating the visuals, but after watching other films from Kar-wai's repertoire, feels like one part of a greater whole. That being said, it remains a perfect film just on it's own.


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