The fascinating visuals and performances by Leung and the assortment of actresses like Gong, Zhang Ziyi and Maggie Cheung ensure that the film is still worth watching.
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In this gorgeously melancholic fresco of love affairs, Tony Leung Chiu Wai plays a womanizing pulp-fiction writer in '60s Hong Kong.
Filmed to perfection by the great Christopher Doyle and others.
The overall effect simply underlines the central weakness of the pic: that the neo-kitschy futuristic scenes don't add much to the real-life '60s relationships.
Just as memorable and emotionally intense as any of Wong's films. It's a mood as much as a movie.
Even the art house crowd will find the film off-putting not only because of its vagueness but because of its thoroughly unlikable characters.
There are many places a visitor may go astray in 2046 -- places where the filmmaker appears to be a bit at loose ends too. Still, Wong's invitation -- ''Let's get lost'' -- is irresistible.
Mood is everything, trumped up by a score so rich with pop songs, bossa nova drama, and symphonic mournfulness it's almost a movie on its own. 2046 may be a Chinese box of style geysers and earnest meta-irony, but that should not suggest there aren't bleeding humans at the center of it.
Even if a Chinese movie doesn't sound like your idea of summer fun, give 2046 a chance. Its pearly artistry and gorgeous faces should put you quickly, deeply, in the mood for love.
The result is a film chilly and externalized in all the ways that Mood was bottled up and woozily dreamlike.