in the mood for love - 22 May 2012
Wong Kar- Wei
Lion's Den, Pomona
'It is a restless moment. Hong Kong 1962,'' reads a title card at the beginning of ''In the Mood for Love,'' and a restiveness that's almost voluptuous -- like that first blush of love when you can barely concentrate on anything else, and the world seems new and strange -- fills the movie. ''Mood'' is a great word because a lot of the movie is mood.
Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung play people, married to others, who are renting rooms in apartments next door, and they eventually discover that their spouses are having an affair.
They come to lean on each other, and that need is suffused with desire. A delicious comparison to " Brief encounter".
The principals are caught as the camera peers at them through the edges of doorways. Its writer and director, Wong Kar-wai, is one of that gifted new breed of moviemakers who think through the lens, and he uses that talent to give the film a heated, rapturous quality; the camera floats along, sneaking a look at the performers out of the corner of its eye. Narrative has rarely been a motivating factor for him; instead, his heart spills out onto the screen.
''Mood,'' is a film about confusion over loyalties. Nat King Cole songs are used as backdropagainst the want of the couple, who constantly stare at each other through glazed, hurting eyes; he plunges beneath those surfaces, and it's gripping. This may be one of the swooniest movies ever made about love, and it luxuriates in its tailspin