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Chungking Express (Widescreen) [Import]
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Chungking Express tells two stories loosely connected by a Hong Kong snack bar. In one story, a cop who's been recently dumped by his girlfriend becomes obsessed with the expiration dates on cans of pineapple; he's constantly distracted as he tries to track down a drug dealer in a blond wig (played by Brigitte Lin, best known from Swordsman II and The Bride with White Hair). Meanwhile, another cop who's recently been dumped by his girlfriend (Tony Leung Chiu-Wai, from John Woo's Hard-Boiled and A Bullet in the Head) mopes around his apartment, talking to his sponge and other domestic objects. He catches the eye of a shop girl (Hong Kong pop star Faye Wang) who secretly breaks in and cleans his apartment. If you're beginning to suspect that neither of these stories has a conventional plot, you're correct. What Chungking Express does have is loads of energy and a gorgeous visual style that never gets in the way of engaging with the charming characters. The movie was shot on the fly by hip director Wong Kar-Wai (Happy Together, Ashes of Time), using only available lighting and found locations. The movie's loose, improvisational feel is closer to Jean-Luc Godard's Breathless than any recent film--and that's high praise. Quirky, funny, and extremely engaging, Chungking Express manages to be experimental and completely accessible at the same time. --Bret Fetzer --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
This film has two different stories, connected by the fact that they are both about love, isolation, hope and despair. The stories are part of the plot, but the important thing here are the characters, and their feelings. You learn about them, and even begin to understand what they feel, thanks at least in part to the fact that you can hear their inner monologues.
The first story is about Cop 223, He Zhiwu (Takeshi Kaneshiro), who has broken up with his long-term girlfriend May, and is terribly sad. He reflects on his love problems, saying that "We split up on April Fool's Day. So I decided to let the joke run for a month. Every day I buy a can of pineapple with a sell-by date of May 1. May loves pineapple, and May 1 is my birthday. If May hasn't changed her mind by the time I've bought thirty cans, then our love will also expire". What can you do, when you watch his character buy lots of cans of pineapple that expire on May 1, believing that doing that will help him to regain May's love? Or when he says things like "We're all unlucky in love sometimes. When I am, I go jogging. The body loses water when you jog, so you have none left for tears"? He is hopeful, but in despair, and the spectator cannot help but feel empathy.Read more ›
Comedy, Drama, Mystery, 102 minutes, Cantonese Language
Directed by Wong Kar-Wai
Starring Brigitte Lin, Tony Leung, Faye Wong and Takeshi Kaneshiro
If you look at the cover of Chungking Express, you will catch a glimpse of some of the stylistic choices made by director Wong Kar-Wai. This is a film that intrigues me because of its style rather than the plot itself. Many of the images are blurred deliberately to reflect Hong Kong's fast-paced life. Other segments are shown in slow motion.
The story is in two parts and shows a glimpse into the lives of two policemen. The first has just broken up with his girlfriend, but he's in denial because it happened on April 1 and she might just be playing a joke on him. He decides to give her one month to reveal that she's joking. As she likes pineapple chunks, he decides to buy one can per day until she comes back to him. The cans must have an expiry date of May 1 as that's when her time expires. When she fails to return, he eats all of the 30 cans in one night. I mention that scene as an example because it demonstrates just how original the script is. The way the characters think and behave is extremely strange and that's part of the reason the film works so well for me.
There are essentially four characters in the movie. The first cop, after eating the 30 cans of pineapple chunks, decides to talk to the next woman he encounters. She turns out to be a drug dealer with an interesting story of her own.
The second story is probably the stronger of the two. It concerns a second cop who is about to break up with his girlfriend. She leaves a letter for him at a food bar he regularly frequents.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Amazing film. One that you can't get out of your head for years after.Published 16 months ago by Stef
When self deprivation holds the most endearing thing to oneself,some times we explode other times
we endure what's given to us,this is what these two stories are trying to... Read more
I love this film. And so when I heard that the film would be re-released in blueray I knew that I had to get it. Read morePublished on June 18 2009 by Dennis Chang
Really nice characters being "showcased". Faye Wong, you will just love her, but the other actors are very good too. Read morePublished on May 23 2009 by Glenn Laycock
This movie brings together a great cast, including the legendary Brigitte Lin, and the indelible Faye Wong. Read morePublished on May 7 2004 by Michael Y. Lau
A cute and purdy love story, It was really good and I loved it! Its one of my favorite movies :).I loved everything about it and I loved the music they had in their, It was great! Read morePublished on Feb. 19 2004
If american filmmakers to the time to show the complexities of human through the everyday things like Wong does I wouldn't have to avoid so many u.s. films.Published on Jan. 12 2004
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