Saturday, May 17, 2008

"In the Mood for Love" (2000)

After suggestions on numerous occasions by a friend to watch the movie In the Mood for Love, I finally watched it tonight. It is a Cantonese movie (the native language spoken in Hong Kong) and is based on a drama of romance between two people, spanning over almost six years in the 1960's.

This is my first take on an east Asian movie; but I must say it is one of the most beautifully made movies I have ever seen - a simple plot of extra-marital romance, but woven beautifully in the fabric of circumstances, external events and the pull and push between faith, love and morals. It is one of the few rare instances when a story solely based on the romance blooming between two already married people succeeds to gather the same frequency from the viewer - given the social stigma of extra-marital relationships in the society of those times.

One of the most different and interesting aspects of the movie is the way they show regularities in our lives - how monotonousness creeps in inside our lives over time, often moulding the way we look at things. I am also intrigued by the manner of silence dominating in different scenes, and still conveying to the viewer the state of mind of the characters - a rare attribute which I have seen in very few movies, some being e.g. Ray's movies like 'Pather Panchali'.

The movie provides a fresh look at romance. Interestingly, there are no romantically explicit scenes, and yet the viewer manages to feel how the love between the two characters progresses over time. The characters seem very humane, mundane and made of flesh-and-blood; they see their love blooming but are constrained by the society and the responsibilities of having been married. Love blooms till comes the time of separation - the characters living upto their moral beliefs - love which still keeps them the people they are. The movie ends at a note where the protagonist sees a blurry past, a past which he can only look back and see and never be able to feel or touch. A touch which, in the end, he buries in a hole in AngorWat, Cambodia- a secret which he thinks he should not share with the world.

The movie once again (on very rare occasions yet) has let me to think the connection between fictions and life - both have players who are humans; they have the incessant urge to be happy and still be responsible to circumstances - succumb to things which they cannot control. I feel it is really the life all of us lead sometime somewhere.


Alok said...

I am planning to watch the movie after reading your post :)

Some movies are made so real …. It is hard to distinguish between the reality and fiction … may be they were inspired by the life so much, it was easy job for us to visualize.

Munmun said...

@ Alok
Sure I would recommend watching it :) Hope you like it as well !