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John is an English photojournalist who has spent over a decade in Hong Kong; his friend Jim often crashes in his cramped apartment. John's unrequited love is Vivian whom he aches for but has not the nerve to possess. Concurrent with England's transfer of Hong Kong back to the Chinese, John discovers that he has a rare form of leukemia and has only months to live. So John, Jim, and the disfigured proto-hippy Jean grab a digital video camera and prowl the streets, seeking to document the "real" Hong Kong one last time. Written by
This is the first time I watched a movie and thought that it had all the perfect subtleties and symbolism of a book. The characters were both real and yet surreal enough that you can see that every character interaction was both meant to represent individual struggles and the struggles of whole cultures. Like literature... sometimes you must learn to read between the lines to appreciate what the author/creator of the book/movie is trying to say. No this isn't just the type of movie you just sit there and watch and expect to do all the work. If you want low-maintenance movies then look elsewhere. Just like not all books are for light reading which just have gratuitous violence and smut... not all movies are made for the sole purpose of entertaining the viewer with the same type of stuff. Look at the name of the movie! It starts there. So many things are going on at once but I did not find it difficult at all to feel the emotions that were intended. So much suppressed emotions... very much like the people of Hong Kong worried about suppression of their freedoms. Each shot of the movie included something symbolic. I think that no matter how many times I watch it I will see one more thing that was meant to be said. Social, political, and individual... I truly admired this movie and the captivating web it has weaved.
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