Last night Netflix aided my insomnia again by sending Wong Kar Wai's Fallen Angels. Around midnight I decided that I would be up at least another 90 minutes so why not throw in the dvd and see what we had in store.
This movie is hard to explain. And part of me thinks this is a film that may actually be better watched alone late in the evening. The story seems all over the place. You have a hitman thinking about his last hit. The hitman's manager who rumages through his trash and makes his bed while wearing leather boots and an extremely short shirt. You have a mute who runs other people's business's in the evening when they are gone. And a few other random characters. The story hops all over the place and maybe even 3/4 of the way through it seems disjointed. Sometimes the characters make you laugh or smile. But you don't, or at least I didn't, feel like there was any connection really made at that point with the viewers and the characters.
So why even continue watching, right? Well first off, the sountrack is just hip as hell. Second, it's beautifully shot. This film is so damn stylized its ridiculous. Part of it may be ther streets of Hong Kong holding a different more exotic feel than streets we see here. But, the shots are sometimes through rain, sometimes through windows, and sometimes black and white. And then sometimes, the use of color in the film just blows you away. I remember after seeing Eyes Wide Shut in the theater that while dispointed in the film overall some of the shots and overall color themes of the movie made me glad I had seen it, especially in the theater. I thought even 3/4 of the way through this, that is how I would feel. Disapointed, but taking away some positive feelings about the movie.
Then Something happened in the last 1/2 hour though and in my contemplating it today that changed my mind. I won't give away the ending of the movie, of course. But, strangely enough, though you aren't entirely sure that there was anymore of a real connection made with the actors, there is a rather grand ending. The final 15 minutes or so espcially.
I don't know whether I have been duped or not. The characters are a bunch of lonersdrifting in and out of the night and I am unsure what qualities of them that I see in myself. But I have been thinking about them and the film all day. I can't get it out of my head. I don't know if I was duped by the style of the film or if their is an actual connection to the characters that I haven't really put my finger on yet. Regardless, I have already reccomended it to friends and really want to watch it again to get a better grasp on it.
At any rate, a director that leaves me thinking about his film all day will be one that I want to see more of, for sure.