Happy Together

1997 [CHINESE]

Action / Drama / Romance

Plot summary

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Top cast

Tony Chiu Wai Leung Photo
Tony Chiu Wai Leung as Lai Yiu-fai
Chen Chang Photo
Chen Chang as Chang
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
882.07 MB
Chinese 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 35 min
P/S 1 / 7
1.77 GB
Chinese 5.1
23.976 fps
1 hr 35 min
P/S 5 / 45

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by davidals9 / 10

Brilliant & Touching Story of loneliness & dislocation

I didn't think so the first time I saw HAPPY TOGETHER, but I really think this film is a masterpiece. Technically it's amazing - the hand-held camera-work is incredible, and the mindbending shifts from saturated colors to monochrome (which I first felt was a stylish stunt) really underscores the loneliness and alienation of the characters brilliantly - the overall effect by the films' end is devastating.

HAPPY TOGETHER was apparently also - at least partially - inspired by the Argentine novelist Manuel Puig, author of 'Kiss Of The Spider Woman' among many other novels, and Puig's fiction tackles similar issues in a similarly fractured style (filled with footnotes, digressions and sudden shifts in perspective),all to incredibly powerful emotional effect.

If HAPPY TOGETHER is something of an homage to Puig, it's a great one. On it's own it's also a devastating portrait of a disintegrating relationship.

Reviewed by jzappa8 / 10

A Highly Stylized Emotional Roller Coaster

Happy Together is a throbbing, raw, and profoundly nostalgic lament from two displaced traveling Chinamen yearning for emotional soundness, for their homeland, and for each other. Wong doesn't front us any of the flickering that can still be struck between lovers who fight all the time. There is no deep poetic interpretation of the story itself, but by leaving so much unsaid, writer-director Wong Kar-Wai doesn't make the misstep of suffocating his characters' relationship with trite soap dialogue. That is not to say, however, that the film even remotely knows the meaning of the phrase "less is more."

You don't watch this film as much as seize on to it. Letting it yank you every which way is a raucous yet intriguing excursion, with fertile visual stylizations that trail you long after seeing the film, all with the impact to communicate directly with the heart. The visuals make the film come alive, and make material the displacement, and thus the unhinging, that the main characters feel from their surroundings and each other. Rather than using dialogue, this highly stylized romance chiefly imparts its themes and moods through its images, and Wong fashions an interior audiovisual composition about the mood swings of a love affair. Wong's use of images for purely emotional photogenic value, feverish camera movements, jukebox soundtrack and his improvisation and experimentation with the actors have an effect reminiscent of Scorsese's Mean Streets. In Wong's emotional roller coaster of a film, the characters seem to have a formidable intuitive certainty that their relationship is star- crossed sooner or later, but they follow passionate impulses regardless, giving the film a dreamy texture that it can't shake as its lovers turn-step to and fro during their free-form Argentine spree.

Wong gradually layers the relationship, just like it would happen in real life, and the doubts and obscurities are constant. He extracts powerful performances from his lead actors. While Leslie Cheung gracefully fluctuates his moments between yearning, resentment, and anger, Tony Leung Chiu-Wai is the calm eye of the storm.

Leung acts from the inside. We intuit his feelings through his natural physical subtleties, chiefly through the sensitive eyes. Even purely physical scenes, like the fights he has with Leslie Cheung's character, don't happen suddenly. Leung winds up for these moments instinctively and then defensively underplays them. And when the tears come, they pour without affectation, making me wonder from what part of Leung's soul he quietly unearths these moments from as Wong rolls the camera.

Reviewed by jboothmillard4 / 10

Happy Together

From director Kar Wai Wong (Chungking Express, In the Mood for Love),this film was featured in the book 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die, and it wasn't even rated that well by the critics, I still gave it a chance though. Basically, in Argentina, homosexual couple Lai Yiu-Fai (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) and Ho Po-wing (Leslie Cheung) from Hong Kong have arrived to take a holiday on the road, but their relationship goes adrift when something goes wrong. To save up for a trip to go back home disillusioned Yiu-Fai gets a job working in a tango bar, while Po-Wing is beaten and bruised and his partner cannot find a way to be in an intimate relationship. Po-Wing is after all they go through not ready to settle down with his partner, and Yiu-Fai next finds a job working in a Chinese restaurant and meets Chang (Chen Chang) from Taiwin who is more youthful. Life for Yiu-Fai takes a new spin, supposedly for the better, while life for Po-Wing continues to shatter and go downward, but in the end they do contact each other once more, but without any good coming from it, but one is able to return to Hong Kong. I didn't understand all of the story going on, apart from the obvious gay relationships going on throughout, and I agree with the critics, it is trying a little too hard to appear indulgent, but it does look good with colour and imagery, that's probably why it would be considered a must see, so it's a relatively interesting romantic drama. Okay!

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