"No jokes here; this film is honest and beautiful."
Wong Kar-Wai's "In The Mood For Love" is one of the most beautiful films I have ever seen. It's look is like looking at a painting come to life, as the viewer is shown a world of lost love through colors, reflections and long, unending shots down deep, rainy corridors. It is a true testament of human emotion and visual poetry that is a far strive from the kinds of films we normally see these days.The simple story of "In The Mood For Love" is set in Shanghi, 1962, where a newspaper editor, Chow Mo-Wan (Tony Liu Chung Wai) moves into an apartment building. As luck would have it, so does Li-Chun (Maggie Cheung). When it is rumoured that Chow's wife is having an affair with Li-Chun's husband, they come together and become friends, which may lead to something deeper.
The film knowingly asks how you would react to such news that your lover is with another. Would you immediately respond and go out and have sex? Would you go catch your lover in action? Would you do nothing? Chow and Li-Chun don't know what to do, because of their cultural background and general guilt. "We're no better than they are", Li-Chun says.
What is so elegant about this film is how their relationship is presented visually . Wong Kar-Wai's use of imagery is flawless; we witness some of the action through mirrors, as if we are the voyeur yet hiding at the same time. There's also long, touching moments of silence that lingers over a certain character, interesting ways of showing characters talk (opposite tracking, whip pans and long-two shots) and strong use of color. You don't only see the red, for example, but you feel it as well.I'm proud of films like "In The Mood For Love". They may wreck you emotionally, but the film doesn't force the emotions out of you, it shows it's cards and lets you deal. The ending of the film is one of those great endings on film that is strange, beautiful, and altogether meaningful, that is like nothing I've seen before. You will never see Hollywood attempt such an ending, but you wouldn't expect Hollywood to ever make a film like this, anyway.