Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Hei yan quan (Ming-liang Tsai, 2006) aka I Don't Want To Sleep Alone

I Don't Want To Sleep Alone (Ming-liang Tsai, 2006)
Rating: 8.3

Kang-sheng Lee makes his eighth appearance as the focal character in a Ming-liang Tsai film (Rebels of the Neon God, Vive L'Amour, The River, What Time Is It There?, Hole, The Skywalk is Gone, and The Wayward Cloud), more impoverished and ailing than ever. The film is set in the director's native city Kuala Lumpur, depicted as filthy and run-down. Homeless and sickly Lee is taken in and nourished back to health by Rawang as they share a flea ridden mattress along with sexual tension. Lee also plays an entirely separate paralyzed character who is cared for by a coffee shop waitress (Shiang-chyi Chen). After forest fires cause a haze to cover the city, resulting in citizens having to wear gas masks or handkerchiefs to prevent inhaling the fog, Chyi and Lee struggle to make love, coughing and wheezing at each other, as it breathing becomes more and more strenuous.

"An act of kindness amidst a thousand sorrows."

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