Fallen Angels

Directed by Wong Kar Wai
1995
Hong Kong
99 minutes
The nocturnal streets of Hong Kong come alive with intersecting tales of love, lust and madness.
In the space of two years, Wong Kar Wai released Chungking Express (1994), the historical epic Ashes of Time (1994) and his neon-soaked ode to the city, Fallen Angels (1995). In an interview Wong explained, “The hitman [character] originally came from the third story of Chungking Express but I only shot two stories, hence I developed the [third].” The ‘fallen angels’ stalking the backstreets of Wong’s Hong Kong are a wordless hitman (Leon Lai), his PVC-clad fixer (Michelle Reis), a dolly punk with a Brigitte Lin-style wig (Karen Mok), a jilted lover (Charlie Yeung) and an anarchic ex-con (Takeshi Kaneshiro). Wilding in the city streets, their lives intersect but in true Wong Kar Wai style, hearts must be broken. In interviews for the release of the film, the director spoke of this emotional dislocation, “now everyone knows how to protect themselves; everyone understands loving someone can often hurt.” With the exception of Takeshi Kaneshiro and Charlie Yeung, Fallen Angels features an entirely new cast, which lends an underground quality to the film, backed by the handheld, almost documentary, shooting style. With its freeform plotting and ultra-stylised aesthetics, Fallen Angels still feels contemporary, even two decades after its original release.

This 4K digital restoration was undertaken from the 35mm original camera negative by the Criterion Collection in collaboration with L’Immagine Ritrovata and Jet Tone. It was supervised and approved by Wong Kar Wai.
An exhilarating rush of a movie.
Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times

Tickets

Sat 23 January
10:30am
Art Gallery of New South Wales
Book Tickets Cancel
Tue 2 February
6:30pm
Dendy Newtown
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Sat 6 February
2pm
Dendy Newtown
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Program Strand
Love & Neon: The Cinema of Wong Kar Wai
Year
1995
Classification
M
Country
Hong Kong
Language
Cantonese with English subtitles
Director
Wong Kar Wai
Producer
Wong Kar Wai, Jeff Lau Chun-wai
Cast
Leon Lai, Michelle Reis, Takeshi Kaneshiro, Charlie Yeung, Karen Mok
Screenwriter
Wong Kar Wai
Editor
William Chang, Wong Ming-lam
Genre
Retrospective
Company Credits
Janus Films
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