In the Mood: A Love Letter to Wong Kar-Wai and Hong Kong
Time Out says
Celebrating 20 years of Wong Kar-wai's 'In the Mood for Love', which regularly tops best film of all time lists
For many ardent cinephiles, Hong Kong director Wong Kar-wai’s lushly lit romance In the Mood for Love (2000) is their favourite film of all time. It certainly wowed critics at the Cannes Film Festival, where it was nominated for, but did not win, the top prize, the Palme d’Or (which went to Lars von Trier’s also excellent Dancer in the Dark).
Star Tony Leung did take home Best Actor for his remarkable turn as a cuckolded man who slowly but surely falls for a neighbour, played by a radiant Maggie Cheung, whose spouse is also doing the dirty. Her dresses alone have been seared into cinematic history, as gorgeous as the sumptuous cinematography they’re folded into, as captured by Aussie Christopher Doyle alongside Kwan Pung-leung and Mark Lee Ping-bing.
To celebrate 20 years of the film sashaying into the sublime, the Opera House staged a livestream event In the Mood: A Love Letter to Wong Kar-Wai and Hong Kong, a night of entertainment inspired by Kar-wai’s vision. You can watch it here.
Performing on the Joan Sutherland stage, Hong Kong-born, Australia-based pop star Rainbow Chan debuted new music inspired by the movie’s unforgettable score. She also threw some Bossa Nova moves from a famous sequence.
Chan was joined by Sydney-based composer, singer and performance artist Marcus Whale – who has popped up at Liveworks, Vivid and Sugar Mountain Festival – and regular collaborator Eugene Choi, who narrated this lavish audio-visual feast, guiding us through a fever dream brought to life, a story of forbidden love and bittersweet longing.
Available free and on demand from the Opera House's Stream platform, we guarantee you that even if you haven’t seen the film, you’ll dig the swinging ‘60s silk dress and sharp suit looks, plus the sultry saxophone solos. And in a time when Hong Kong is in the throes of political turmoil, Chan, Choi and Whale have a lot to say, exploring their interweaving cultural heritage and the nostalgic sense of a moment lost in time but forever held in our hearts. We’re definitely in the mood.
Want more marvellous movies? Check out the highlights of 30 years of Flickerfest.
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