Quick-Thoughts, Again: Wong Kar-wai’s Happy Together (1997)

Screened at The Frida Cinema 2nd Viewing

I appreciate movies that give into the concept that we need conflict in order to feel alive because I genuinely think it’s one of the truest statements one could accept; in hindsight, we’re all just pretentious assholes who ignorantly stir s**t up to create connection with others, therefore insinuating purpose, no matter how toxic the actions to get there may come to be. Wong Kar-wai’s Happy Together is trying to dig at this concept with an emphasis on how we need this conflict to furthermore “love”, or better yet, prove love. It’s kind of like that hypothetical “cheating” scenario where enervating couples decide to sleep with someone besides their spouse in order to test if they‘re still truly in love with one another by seeing if the results end along the lines of heart-aching guilt/regret and an unshakable yearn to return. It seems as if people are willing to go through the months or years of hell after the magical feelings of a relationship’s inception, only then to break from it for awhile just so that it can rewind once again in the future, as those short moments of revival seem to count even more than the longer moments of endurance within the affairs of mismatched romance. 

People live to command and to be commanded, especially in any sort of two-way relationship. Foreign territory may be our dream, but most places familiar are just far too comforting and psychologically chained to us due to their clearer establishments of this dynamic interactive order. How then are we supposed to arrive at new sectors like we wish to, hand in hand? 

Verdict: B+

Wong Kar-wai Ranked

“Happy Together” is now available to stream on The Criterion Channel and HBO Max.

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