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Film Recommendation: ‘Chungking Express’: the love stories of meeting and losing

Submitted by our chapter in Shanghai, China

By: Ubik Sun

Hi everyone, I am Ubik, a student director and writer who likes film, traveling, cake, magic and board games. As a film lover, I always talk with my friends about the films I have seen, but unfortunately in most cases, they haven’t even heard of the films’ names. So that’s why I gave up the time I could spend on magic cards or ULYSSES to write this article: there are so many unknown incomparable films that deserve recognition. Some day, when you are feeling bored, perhaps you will remember and try to watch them.

‘Chungking Express’, directed by Wong Kar-Wai, is my favourite romantic film. A master of literature film and famous for always wearing sunglasses, Wong is known for never giving actors much screenplay. This film is supported by Quentin and also got an 8.1 rating on IMDB; you can watch its trailer here.

This film was shot in the Chungking Mansions, one of the most complex buildings in Hong Kong. The Chungking Mansions is almost like a little city located in Hong Kong’s center. You can read more about ChungKing Mansions here.

There are two love stories in this film: the first story is about a nameless lady and a policeman called 233, and the second story is about a girl called Fei and another police called 663. In these two stories, Wong shows us his thoughts on love:

“In each single day of our life, we hastily brush past strangers that mean nothing to us but utter passers-by, but as time advances, one or two from the unknown group might unconsciously become an inalienable part for us, like an intimate friend or a real confidant.”

233 is a cop, but he becomes attached to the nameless lady 56 hours after they first meet. Fei used to meet the nameless lady at night, 233 also tried to date her, 663 and 233 are colleagues, etc. In this film, we can see the police eat 30 cans of pineapple to make sure his love finished, then use running to ease his sadness. We can see 663 talk with only his towel, and reject the fact that his girlfriend has left his side.

That’s why I love this film: it shows people’s life, normal daily life, everyone can easily find their reflection in this film.

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