Rated 2.0

Director Wong Kar-Wai’s 2046 is a thing of beauty. There’s not a wasted shot in this ode to unrequited love, with every frame exuding some level of elegant style and devotion. Yet, although Wong has made a beautiful-looking film here, there isn’t much good to say about the intentionally near nonexistent story. It’s really just a pastiche of thoughts and yearnings, with no real attention to a cohesive narrative. Chow (Tony Leung) is a writer in Hong Kong circa 1966, working on a science-fiction novel that shares the film’s title. His book is a Blade Runner-like story of a man in love with an android that can’t love him back, and Wong uses this story as a parallel to Chow’s struggles with the sacred emotion. Wong occasionally cuts to a visual recreation of Chow’s words, juxtaposing film-noir imagery with a futuristic world that would be right at home in, well, a Ridley Scott movie. The technique is more stunt than substance.