1. Stephen Teo, Wong Kar-wai (London: British Film Institute, 2005). For another recent book-length study, see Peter Brunette, Wong Kar-wai (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2005). Brunette is also concerned with establishing Wong’s legacy as an auteur, but does not explore Wong’s influences as comprehensively as Teo. [return to text]
2. James Clifford suggests just such an analogic relationship between culture and travel, proposing the idea of “culture as travel,” but also “as sites traversed — by tourists, by oil pipelines, by Western commodities, by radio and television signals.” James Clifford, “Traveling Cultures,” in Lawrence Grossberg, Cary Nelson, and Paula A. Treichler, eds., Cultural Studies(New York and London: Routledge, 1992), 103.
3. In an interview, Wong has stated that he had in mind French New Wave director Jacques Demy’s Lola (1961) while shooting the second part of Chungking Express. In the first part, the mysterious woman’s blonde wig and raincoat are drawn from John Cassavetes’ Gloria (1980). See Wong Kar-wai, “Interview with Wong Kar-wai (Toronto International Film Festival, 1995),” interview with Peter Brunette, in Peter Brunette, Wong Kar-wai, 115.
4. David Bordwell, Planet Hong Kong: Popular Cinema and the Art of Entertainment (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2000), 270.
5. Curtis K. Tsui, “Subjective Culture and History: The Ethnographic Cinema of Wong Kar-wai," Asian Cinema 7, no. 2 (1995): 94. For a similar argument connecting Hong Kong cinema aesthetics with classical Chinese art, see Joelle Collier, "A Repetition Compulsion: Discontinuity Editing, Classical Chinese Aesthetics, and Hong Kong's Culture of Disappearance," Asian Cinema 10, no. 2 (Spring-Summer 1999): 67-79.
6. Gina Marchetti, "Buying American, Consuming Hong Kong: Cultural Commerce, Fantasies of Identity, and the Cinema," in Poshek Fu and David Desser, eds., The Cinema of Hong Kong: History, Arts, Identity (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), 306.
9. Arjun Appadurai, “Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy,” Public Culture 2, no. 2 (Spring 1990): 4.
11. Marchetti, “Buying American, Consuming Hong Kong,” 306.
12. This tale is included in Murakami’s collection of short stories The Elephant Vanishes, trans. Alfred Birnbaum and Jay Rubin (New York: Vintage Books, 1994), 35-49
13. Marchetti, “Buying American, Consuming Hong Kong,” 306.
15. Ackbar Abbas, Hong Kong: Culture and the Politics of Disappearance (Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 1997), 14.
16. Ibid., 11.
17. Ibid., 28.
19. Wong Kar-wai, “Wong Kar-wai: One Entrance, Many Exits,” interview by Richard J. Havis, Cinemaya 38 (October 1997): 15.[return to text]
20. Stephen Teo, Wong Kar-wai, 102-3.
21. Christopher Doyle, “To the End of the World,” Sight and Sound 7, no. 5 (May 1997): 16.
22. Nick Kaldis, “Third World,” in Fiona A. Villella, ed., "The Cinema of Wong Kar-wai — A Writing Game," Senses of Cinema 13(April-May 2001), http://www.sensesofcinema.com/contents/01/13/wong-symposium.html (accessed November 16, 2003).
23. Marc Siegel, “The Intimate Spaces of Wong Kar-wai,” in Esther C.M. Yau, ed., At Full Speed: Hong Cinema in a Borderless World. (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2001), 288. For a completely opposing view, see Audrey Yue, "What's So Queer About Happy Together? a.k.a. Queer (N)Asian: Interface, Community, Belonging," Inter-Asia Cultural Studies 1, no. 2 (2000): 251-64. Yue finds a heterosexual bias underlying the narrative, and attacks the film for valorizing Fai’s “straight” behaviour over Bo-wing’s “decadent excess” (255). However, this approach depends greatly upon the conflation of homosexuality and excess, while failing to account for the similarly excessive behaviour of straight characters in Wong’s other films.
24. Wong Kar-wai, “In the Mood for Edinburgh,” interview by Tony Rayns, Sight and Sound 10, no. 8 (August 2000): 17.
25. Fredric Jameson, Postmodernism, or, the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism (Durham: Duke University Press, 1991), 19.
26. Dana Polan, “Look,” in Fiona A. Villella, ed., "The Cinema of Wong Kar-wai — A Writing Game," Senses of Cinema 13(April-May 2001), http://www.sensesofcinema.com/contents/01/13/wong-symposium.html (accessed November 16, 2003).
27.Wong Kar-wai, interview by Scott Tobias, The Onion 37, no. 7 (February 28, 2001),
28. Stephen Teo, “Wong Kar-wai’s In the Mood for Love: Like a Ritual in Transfigured Time,” Senses of Cinema 13 (April-May 2001), http://www.sensesofcinema.com/contents/01/13/mood.html (accessed November 16, 2003).
31. Chu Yiu-wai, "(In)authentic Hong Kong: The '(G)local' Cultural Identity in Postcolonial Hong Kong Cinema," Post Script 20, nos. 2-3 (Winter-Spring 2001): 148.
32. Audrey Yue, “In the Mood for Love: Intersections of Hong Kong Modernity,” in Chris Berry, ed., Chinese Films in Focus: 25 New Takes (London: British Film Institute, 2003), 131.
33. Ibid., 132.
34. Sheldon Lu Hsiao-peng, "Filming Diaspora and Identity: Hong Kong and 1997," in Poshek Fu and David Desser, eds., The Cinema of Hong Kong: History, Arts, Identity, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), 275.
35. The 1997 handover is the dominant theme in critical responses to Wong Kar-wai’s films (and to recent Hong Kong cinema generally). See, for example, Ackbar Abbas, Hong Kong: Culture and the Politics of Disappearance, and Stephen Teo, Hong Kong Cinema: The Extra Dimensions (London: British Film Institute, 1997).
36. Rey Chow, “A Souvenir of Love,” in Esther C.M. Yau, ed., At Full Speed: Hong Cinema in a Borderless World. (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2001), 226.
37. Blanche Chu, "The Ambivalence of History: Nostalgia Films Understood in the Post-Colonial Context," Hong Kong Cultural Studies Bulletin, nos. 8-9 (Spring-Summer 1998): 43.
38. Stephen Teo asserts that 2046 is “a time odyssey (not a space odyssey, as some critics mistakenly assume).” See Stephen Teo, Wong Kar-wai, 141. Although Teo is correct to place emphasis on the film’s excavation of the past and the future, the film’s conflation of spatial and temporal imagery produces what might be better described as a “space-time odyssey.” Accordingly, Peter Brunette also notes the fact that 2046 is “presented not so much as a date but rather as a place.” See Peter Brunette, Wong Kar-wai (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2005), 103.[return to text]
39. As Stephen Teo comments, the train journey in 2046 is emblematic of an “anxious thrust towards the future,” linking it both to Fai’s train-ride at the end of Happy Together and the bike-ride through the tunnel at the end of Wong’s Fallen Angels 1995). See Wong Kar-wai, 141.
40. Ibid., 151.
42. Peter Brunette, Wong Kar-wai, 107.
43. Wong Kar-waii, “Interview with Wong Kar-wai (Cannes Film Festival, 2001),” interview by Gilles Ciment, in Peter Brunette, Wong Kar-wai, 132.
44. Stephen Teo, Wong Kar-wai, 149.
46. Stephen Teo comments that the “device” of having these actors speak their own language contributes to the film’s pan-Asian appeal. This suggests, I would add, a paradoxical relationship between cultural translation and difference. Stephen Teo, Wong Kar-wai, 153-4.