Sunday, 27 January 2008

poetry in moving pictures

today i went to the cinema, for the first time again after about three weeks of abstinence. i couldn't really decide what to see, the choices were between "once", "the darjeeling limited" och "my blueberry nights". i ended up with "my blueberry nights", basically because it was the saloon with the most free seats (the less people in the room, the less they disturb, or so i thought..) and because i wanted to see it at some time anyway. it is wong kar-wai's first american movie, and it is also nora jones' debut on the screen, which, as numerous critics already have mentioned, is obvious. still i wouldn't take either of those facts as something negative, as the location gives a new touch to wong kar-wai's fascinating pictures, and as nora jones plays her role as naive as i think it was meant to be played.

the story that is told is rather simple, a girl with a broken heart and a lonely guy who owns a café in new york meet. he steals a kiss from her while she is sleeping on the counter, and the next day she is gone, on a trip through the states, sending postcards to him. on her way "over the street" (as she puts it), she meets different people, we see beautiful landscapes, and in the end we end up where we left: the café in new york. a road movie, as poetic as for examples the ones by wim wenders ("paris, texas",...) but poetic in a different way, maybe in a hong-kong-sort of way.

apart from the landscapes and city-subway-scapes (that are so typical for wong kar-wai) there were two scenes, or pictures, that impressed me a lot. they belong, in a way, together. the first one is a close-up on nora jones' face just before the first kiss (after which she leaves town). the second one takes up this picture again in the end and fulfills it.

then, there was this stunningly beautiful soundtrack as well. of course it was partly nora jones, but the song that stayed with me now for the evening was cat powers "the greatest". poetic, interesting, melodic, the perfect soundtrack for a dream.

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