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Blueberry Nights

I am a huge Wong Kar Wai fan. I love his style. I love his patience with the shot. He holds it for way longer than most would have the courage to and that is what makes it visually compelling.

So I was disappointed to hear that Blueberry Nights, his latest and greatest is not so great after all. I will still watch it – especially for the quivering kiss.

Looking back at “My Blueberry Nights” with some remove, though, the film doesn’t seem such a crushing disappointment as much as just Wong Kar Wai on an off day. He was certainly due. The run of “Happy Together,” “In the Mood for Love,” “2046” and his “Eros” segment “The Hand” makes it easy to forget that there have been other times his signature fixations, his heady visual style and his narrative aimlessness haven’t congealed into a great film. That it should happen with his highest profile film to date is a shame, but “My Blueberry Nights” isn’t a complete write-off — it’s just not, with the exception of one silent, quivery kiss, shot through with that particular cinematic felicity that suffuses his successes.

Understanding why a master messes up can be as important as understanding why they succeed (not that I profess to understand either at this point).

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