theriverjordan’s review published on Letterboxd:
All the romances of the world reverberate in the echo chamber of longing that is “2046.”
There are palaces of the monarchy, and palaces of the mind, but “2046” is the cinematic depiction of Director Wong Kar-Wai’s palace of the heart.
Among less literal things, 2046 is a fictional destination where one can reclaim lost memories. It exists inside of a novel being written by “In the Mood for Love’s” protagonist Chow Mo-wan following the end of his unrequited affair in that earlier film. Inside the character’s book, and imagination, the ghosts of women, or - a - women - never won - bump up against one other’s unmet and unmade promises.
Beyond just the lost affection of Tony Leung’s forlorn Chow, Wong also introduces the phantoms of his prior works into the spiritual space of the author’s composition.
Quotes, gestures, outfits, and frames resuscitate to give a death rattle of romance.
The dime novel disposability of the output produced becomes Wong commenting on the cultural transience of his own filmography. Art, like love, moves through minds and space without the weight of matter.
There are no laws of physics broken when both dissipate into nothingness.
And, they do.
Their meaning, what’s left of it, can be inferred only from the whispers of the once wild hearts who held their resonances dear. Hearts, that, too will someday stop; becoming mere echos in a silent chamber.