Happy Together

Director: Wong Kar-Wai
Year Released: 1997
Rating: 3.5

Lovers Tony Leung and Leslie Cheung find themselves exiled in Buenos Aires - while Leung works at various jobs to support them, Cheung runs around, associating with random men. I'm not going to lie and say that Cheung's real-life suicide doesn't add more layers to this than was intended back in 1997, but the film is still potent and deliriously beautiful, with dream team crew of Wong, editor William Chang and cinematographer Christopher Doyle turning the Argentine city into a wonderland of colors and characters; the music, by Frank Zappa (whose "I Have Been In You" plays in a hilarious loop in my head as I type this) and Caetano Veloso, is meticulously selected and situated within the film itself. When I first saw this I had a minor complaint with the constant bickering between the two leads, and though I still agree with my younger self's reservations, I feel the free-form nature (almost like a jazz composition) and sense of romantic longing (also present in Chungking Express and In the Mood for Love) do their part to compensate.