Last week Thursday, I was privileged to watch Wong Kar Wai’s Chungking Express. Filmed in 1994, it is a Hong Kong romance drama film that focuses on two different stories in sequence, which handle relationship complications that are almost identical to each other. If I had one word to summarize the film, AMAZING.
While watching, the part of the film that captivated my attention the most was the scenes that incorporated motion blur effects in which I believe Wong Kar Wai did a fantastic job on, especially in the first story, as he rhythmically alternated the visuals between film, video, and pixellated images. I kind of liked how the music, specifically the song “California Dreamin'” by The Mamas & the Papas, had a repetition to most of the scenes in the second story because when I got home from watching Chungking Express, I immediately played that song and jammed to it until I got bored. Plot wise, I got a little bit confused since I honestly had no idea who was the main character at first. However, as the film continued, I finally understood it since the transition from the first to second story and I liked how the men that were dumped by their lovers were both cops. In fact, I thought the transition in the film is better than what a conventional crime movie would do since, in this case, the first cop is attracted to a waitress she met at a fast-food bar, but she ends up falling in love with a different cop, but rarely notices her even though she has keys to his apartment.
After the screening, I was also grateful to stay for the Q&A discussion, which made it even better since I was unaware of the fact that it was Wong Kar Wai’s first visit to Hawaii. During that time, I genuinely liked how he got the name of the film based on the film Midnight Express. To wrap it up, I think Chungking Express is a great film to watch where it not only emphasizes on two different love stories that can eventually happen to any individual, but also teaches a life lesson on what love is and how it works since there are many concepts around it. Now if you’ll excuse me, I am going to continue to play the songs that were featured in the film.