Urban Stories - Chungking Express
Wong Kar-wai is seen as one of the filmmakers able enough to capture the postmodern qualities of contemporary cities such as Hong Kong. Ping-kwan posits that in Chungking Express Wong Kar-wai creates a postmodern pastiche out of different parts of the city, but because the names refer to real places they reconstitute the cinematic city from its parts –
a postmodern pastiche of Chungking Mansion in Tsimshatsui and a fast-food place called Midnight Express in the Lan Kwai Fong area in Central. The pastiche of the names of places in the title, like the pastiche of the two unrelated stories in the film, helps us to blur geographical divisions and discredit referentiality. Yet the use of the actual names of these two places, as well as the sensitive lingering of the camera and the attention to details in art direction, also redirect our attention to the speciﬁc urban sites in Hong Kong.Read more about Hong Kong and 'Chungking Express' in chapter 4 pg.94. Also useful for Film Noir and French New Wave.