Part of the new wave of Hong Kong productions, very modern and unique.
Takeshi Kaneshiro's best movie persona is that of the lovable loser. (e.g., ANNA MAGDALENA, CHUNGKING EXPRESS) He begins the movie as a completely hopeless and messed up loner who's foolish enough to be beaten and thrown out of a bar, and then goes back in for more beating. You just want to give him a hug.
Carman Lee is the same sort, looking bruised and makeup-less throughout most of the movie, but still beautiful. She needs a hug, too. Doesn't take a genius to figure out that these two orphan-like people end up clinging to each other.
The ending is heart-rending - so much is told without words. It had me clutching my chest with both my hands.
Also, the music is great. Xylophones reminiscent of TWIN PEAKS, and a wacky samba beat is played over a tragi-comic scene in which a gang desperately scrambles to find ice to put their boss's severed fingers in. It's just absolutely cool.
Some violent scenes (aforementioned beating, creative finger-slicing) and a lot of character-building with visual elements. Pre-coital grooming rituals include clipping their nails, and the lovers try on each other's clothes and give each other bad haircuts. Yup, it's that sort of a movie.
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