Jon?’s review published on Letterboxd:
thank you Wong Kar-Wai.
thank you for inspiring me to create.
thank you for somehow managing to display the inner-workings of the human mind (the desires, the words unsaid, the feelings, the love, the passage of time, those feelings lingering) through your films.
thank you for putting your unique virtuosity (thank you to Christopher Doyle as well of course) out there for us, the audience, to absorb.
thank you for letting us be witnesses, and participants.
this is a film that anyone familiar with WKW's work can enjoy (I guess you can enjoy it too if it was your first WKW...but this being someone's intro to his work is so weird to me). but I really think that 2046 takes on another life if you've seen Days of Being Wild and In the Mood for Love, the other two films in this informal "trilogy". the references throughout to both of those films had me in awe, considering those are two of my favourites as well. not to mention, there's sly, little references to other points in WKW's filmography here as well. i'm so enamored with this film that i'm willing to look past its very few, very minor shortcomings (namely, the whole "10 hours later, 100 hours later" inserts). it's just my favourite filmmaker, someone who has inspired me on a deeply personal level and still does (let's not bring up My Blueberry Nights...), showing off all his tricks in this one. Tony Leung has never been better, never been more charming, more charismatic, more uniquely him. WKW seems to have a thing for casting the most beautiful women ever too, and that pretty much remains the same here. and every actor in a WKW film seems to automatically be able to hit you right in the feels with their performances. they embody their roles, maybe because we see so much of ourselves in them. lost loves, secrets that we guard so much they can only be said to trees, self-destructive behaviours, being unable to reconcile the passage of time and what ghosts result from it. and I mean, it's just such a gorgeous film to look at as well.
back to this being a "trilogy"...WKW is someone who's notorious for never writing a full script before shooting. he comes up with scenes/dialogue on the day of the shoot. Tony Leung reportedly didn't even know his Happy Together character was gay until the first day of production. I say this to say that I find it difficult to believe that 2046 was the ultimate endgame to a trilogy that began 14 years prior with Days of Being Wild. and yet...it all WORKS. there are so many great callbacks to Days and In the Mood. the ending of Days has always confounded me, and yet it's brought back here (if you've seen both films, you know what I mean). there's no way that WKW could've known, in 1990, that someday he'd bring it all back together; especially true since In the Mood wasn't even supposed to originally be what it turned out to be. and yet, this is exactly what happened. it suggests to me that artistry and creativity are sometimes intrinsically linked with the artist's very soul. and considering i'm not a spiritual person, this very idea is all the more fascinating to me. there's probably a lot more that I could say on this, but the words escape me at this time.
there's so much here. there's a world of ideas, thoughts, symbolism. there's a film in all of that too. where do the ideas end? where does the film begin? who says it has to?
(Feb. 6, 2020...February, the 2nd month...2+0+2+0=4...the 6th day...2046; okay i'm reaching there)