Director Kar-Wai Wong’s 2046 is a thing of beauty. There’s not a wasted shot in his ode to unrequited love, with every frame of the film exuding some level of elegant style and devotion. And yet, while Wong has made a beautiful looking film here, there isn’t much positive to say about the intentionally near-nonexistent story. The movie is just a pastiche of thoughts and yearnings, with no real attention to a cohesive narrative. Chow (Tony Leung Chiu-Wai) is a writer in Hong Kong circa 1966 working on a science-fiction novel that shares the film’s title. His novel is a Blade Runner-like story of a man who loves an android who can’t love him back, and Wong uses this story as a parallel to Chow’s struggles with the sacred emotion. Wong occasionally cuts to a visual recreation of Chow’s words, juxtaposing the late ’60s film noir visual with a world that would be right at home in a Ridley Scott movie. The technique is more stunt than substance.


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