Pankaya Sachdeva

Wong Kar Wai’s Mood for Love is one of those films I’ve always wanted to see, but have never been able to see. When I finally saw him in Ganda Sachin Kundalkar, I was amazed by his beauty and grace. Set in Hong Kong in 1962, the film tells the story of two lonely neighbors, Mrs. Morgan. Chan (Maggie Cheung) and Mr. Chow (Tony Leung), whose husbands have an affair and then develop feelings for each other. The film has a core full of melancholy that is deeply moving.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

The film Mood for Love tells the story of how we look at the world, the lack of courage to make difficult decisions and the opportunities we missed and regretted. Throughout the film, Mrs. Chan perfectly dressed in her Chongsams. The neighbors are surprised that she is going to buy noodles on the bridge. Mr. Chow is also very well dressed. He always wears suits and ties. Her hair is gently combed and brushed. No strand of her hair seems inappropriate. Mrs. Chan and Mr. Chow’s appearance serves as a mask to hide their inner confusion. Deep inside, they’re alone and dissatisfied. Your husband has been traveling abroad for a long time. His wife works at night. They don’t see their husband for weeks and months. But they consciously open something to the world and pretend to agree with others.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

As soon as they learn about their husband’s infidelity, they start to play a role-playing game in order to understand it better. And in doing so, they develop feelings for each other. However, they prefer not to take measures against them because they want to be morally better than their husbands. It is also a matter of lack of courage on their part. At the beginning of the film it says that it is a disturbing moment. She put her head down to give him a chance to get close. But he couldn’t because he lacked courage. She turns around and leaves. None of them has the courage to free themselves from the shackles of their lives. Mr. Chow knows that Mrs. Chan doesn’t have the courage to leave her husband. So he decides to move.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

At one of their meetings, Mr. Chow told Ms. Chan about his freedom in many areas when he’s free. After he’s married, he has to do business with his wife. They wonder if they’re not married. Mrs. Chan thinks she’d be happier if she was alone. The marriage has kept her prisoner. During their night walks, they are often placed behind bars that resemble a prison. One of the most vivid images associated with the film shows the reflections of a grid falling on them as if they were trapped in prison. They’re afraid to get out of those cells. It really hurts not to be seen together. You enter the house at different times. At one point they had to spend the night under lock and key because their neighbors came home early. Mr. Chow has even reserved a private room where they can meet without the prying eyes of the neighbors.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

They’re locked up in prisons.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

The Mood for Love also talks about the opportunities we have missed in our lives and which become our constant regret. Mrs. Chan hurried to get to Mr. Chan’s room, but he left as soon as she arrived. She missed her chance. Later she sneaks into his apartment and calls him, but can’t talk to him once he’s on the line, so he misses another chance. In the final moments of the film, Mr. Chow visits his old apartment and looks out the window at Mrs. Chow. Chan’s apartment. The owner told him that a woman and her son were still here. Without knowing that this woman is none other than Mrs. Chan, he walks past her apartment without seeing her again. Our lives are determined by opportunities, even those we miss.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

Wong Kar Wai uses vibrant film styles in In Mood for Love. The Chongsum Mrs. Chan almost always wears in the background. The red Chongam matches the red curtains. Flower Chongam matches the flower curtains. Besides, we never see the faces of Mrs. Chan and Mr. Chow. But the most remarkable thing is the way the film was made. The gaze of the camera is the gaze of the observer, who observes the process from the outside. It is located next to the windows, corridors and walkways. He tries to catch a glimpse of the history of the heroes. We’ll never see the inside of the house where they’re staying. There were also many scenes in which the characters are visible from behind or stuck in the frame.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

Your Chongsams match the background.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

The camera guards his life outside.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

Pictures of the corridors

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

The frame has been frozen to reflect Mr. Chow’s desire to freeze time.

Mrs. Chan and Mr. Chow will hear about their husbands’ affair over dinner. He accidentally asked her about the bag she was carrying earlier. She answered that her husband had taken her on a business trip abroad. Just like she asked him about the tie he was wearing. He says his wife buys all his ties. Mrs. Chow’s husband had two bags – one for his wife and one for his mistress, who was Mr. Chow’s wife. In the same way, Mr. Chow’s wife has two relationships – one with her husband and one with her lover, who happens to be Mrs. Chow. Chan’s husband is. Not only their husbands were having an affair, their neighbors were having an affair as well. This confirms the suspicion that Mrs. Chan and Mr. Chow were in their minds.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

At the beginning of the film, Mrs. Chan asks her husband to bring two bags for her boss. She doesn’t give a clear reason, but she says she’s fine, even though they’re the same colour. Her boss at the shipping company where she works has had an affair, and she helps him manage his relationship with two women. The scene with the two handbags also gave an idea of how she would find out about her husband’s affair. In another scene, Mrs. Chan her boss’s new tie. Your boss is impressed with your observation. She says you notice things when you’re paying attention. A few minutes later his boss changes his tie and Mrs. Chan asks him again why. His boss said the new one was too catchy, which was a gift from his mistress. Given her perspicacity, it’s no wonder Mrs. Chan sees the tie Mr. Chow is wearing. He was just like her husband. Returning to the scene where the two saw each other before, the indignant expressions of the two betray what they thought all the time, at the moment they met.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

While watching the movie In the mood for love, the only movie that came to mind all this time was the no less melancholic Breakfast Box. The film, directed by Ritesh Batra, is a epistolary novel set between Ila (Nimrat Kaur) and Saajan (Irfan) when a breakfast can for Ila’s husband is accidentally delivered to Saajan. Compensating the lack of love for food is a topic discussed in the magazines In the Mood for Love and The Lunchbox. Mrs. Chan picks up noodles almost every day from a nearby shop. Mrs. Chan and Mr. Chow often see them eating together. At one stage of the film, they order food that their husbands like. Mr. Chan offers him the spicy sauce his wife prefers. Later on in the movie, a friend told Mrs. Chan that Mr. Chow was hungry for sesame seeds. She surprises him by cooking the same thing. At their last meeting before they left, she asked him if he wanted something to eat that she could bring him. Also in The Lunchbox, Ila and Saadzan are two bachelors who develop unlikely relationships because of food and letters. He is married, which seems to have lost its taste, and Sayan is a widower whose wife died many years ago. She sends her husband’s favorite dishes to Saajan. On another point, Saazan accidentally mentions that his favorite dish is aubergine. She also prepares them and sends them to him. Food is a metaphor for the love they need in their lives. Other characters are also hungry for food or love. Be Aslam wants to eat well so he doesn’t have to eat bananas every day. Ila’s mother gets hungry when her husband dies, as if his death took everything away from her.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

Optional.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

In Mood for Love, Mr. Chow decides to move to Singapore for a better life. He asks Mrs. Chan for an extra ticket if she goes with him. Singapore becomes the Bhutan of the Breakfast Box, where Ila, learning her husband’s novel, wonders if she can settle there. Saazan writes to her that if he comes to Bhutan with her.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

Both films also talk about the opportunities we missed in life. Mrs. Chan sneaks into Mr. Chow’s room, but when she arrives, he’s already left for Singapore. Later she goes to her apartment in Singapore and calls him, but speaks softly on the phone. She takes the pink slippers that originally belonged to her and leaves behind a pink cigarette with lipstick. Somehow she couldn’t take the next step to be with him. Nat King Cole does quizzes, quizzes, quizzes that are played throughout the film and show his indecisiveness. Every time I ask. What, when, how and where. They always answer. Maybe, maybe, maybe. There’s something like this going on between Ela and Saajan. After exchanging letters for a while, they decide to meet. The day he goes to meet Ela, the smell in his bathroom, Saajan, reminds him of his grandfather. He was impressed by the fact that he was getting older. Just me and the old man’s scent, he writes her. He goes to the restaurant and keeps an eye on her, but he doesn’t dare talk to her in person. Later, Ela goes to his office to meet him, but he resigns and moves to Nasik. Eventually Saazan comes back and tries to find Ila. He never shows what happens to them. Maybe they met and went to Bhutan. Maybe not.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

She calls, but she doesn’t talk.
He’s coming, but he’s not going out.

Not only in history, but also in certain elements of cinematography, these two films have similarities. The film never shows the faces of Mrs. Mom’s husband. Chow and Mr. Chow’s wife. Except for a few scenes where they are seen from behind, only their voices can be heard in the film. In the breakfast box is Aunt Deshpande (Bharti Achrekar), a friendly neighbor of Ila, whose face has never been seen in the film either, but whose presence is marked by her voice in the film. In an interview with TheAerogram Butra also said that many people tell him that his film reminds them of the film In the mood for love.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

By the time she got to his room, he had already left for Singapore.

He went to see Nasik when she came to his office.

In the final moments of Mood for Love, Mr. Chou visits the beautiful temple complex of Angkor Wat in Cambodia. Unlike Hong Kong’s Dark Balanas, the film shows widescreen images for the first time. Mr. Chow walks to one of the holes in the walls and whispers in a secret. It is a deeply moving moment when you bury the history of your past exactly in the ruins that represent the past. I remembered Aandhi, where the extraterrestrial couple Artie (Suchitra Sen) and JK (Sanjeev Kumar) walk through the ruins of the beautiful sun temple Martanda in Kashmir and talk about their broken relationship. Shayad and dino ki baths hogi, jab yeh imarat abhi ujdi nahi thi, says J.K., the imarat who represents their relationship while remembering their past. In the world of Gulzar she becomes Tere Bina Zindagi Se Koi Shikwa To Nahin. In Wong Kar-wai’s world this will be the case: He remembers those years of disappearance. Like through a dusty window, he can see the past, but not touch it.

In the Mood for Love: Maybe, Maybe, Maybe

[For more information about the author’s work, check out his blog here]

You May Also Like

Mulholland Drive (2001)

Movie and plot overview In a world that only David Lynch can…

MVFF 2020 Dispatches –

This will be one of the many reviews that will be made…

The Eiger Sanction (1975) Kino Lorber Blu-ray Review

Stop Synthesis For K2, Cliffhanger and the vertical boundary, there was the…

‘The Walking Dead: World Beyond’ 1×02 Review: “The Blaze of Gory”

Last week, in the Walking Dead… World Beyond, we got to know…