Long Day's Journey Into Night
Diqiu zuihoude yewan
Gateway | Gateway
Dreams and poetry have always been at the heart of a certain kind of cinema: one that transports viewers into worlds where objective narrative realism is trumped by subjective emotional truth. Bi Gan, whose prize-winning cinema-poem Kaili Blues (2015) played previously at VIFF, has made a dream-world masterpiece, a soaring, pulsing, sweeping vision of noir-tinged mystery, longing, lust and murder that’s been called "a flaming torch in the heart of the night… a poetry of blood."
Luo Hongwu (Wang Jue) remembers a love affair (or perhaps he is remembering a movie he once saw?) with the glamorous, elusive, emerald-green-dressed Wan Qiwen (Chinese movie star Tang Wei). Determined to find her, or at least to recover his memories of her—the film deliberately obscures the difference—Luo sets out on a quest to his (and the director’s) hometown, Kaili, a quest that involves a murdered childhood friend Wildcat (Lee Hong-chi), a ferocious romantic rival (Chen Yongzhong), and a series of women who complicate his obsessive search.
Spectacle takes over in the astonishing final hour of the film, when Luo enters a movie theatre, dons 3D classes, and we do the same, entering a continuous 3D shot of astonishing beauty and daring that travels through a never-before-experienced dimension of ecstatic cinematic space-time.
— Shelly Kraicer