Longing for a decent (very decent, I'm riding off the high and would say best last few years) romance/ 'chickflick' that won't insult your intelligence?! Ans: Love in the Buff.
I just stepped out of the cinema of Love in the Buff with my gfs. It's too late to go for a drink in our little neighborhood to spazz over. And tbh we r no spring chickens, beauty sleep =lifeline. Now I'm so not surprised this movie robs HG #1 status in the universe last premiere wkend in the tiny city of HK.
A subbed trailer:
Love in the Buff is sequel to Love in the Puff, the better, improved Ver2. Now our OTP is firmly in their 30s pushed and pulled by more imminent issues.
There r fresh discussions in it I thought ITWY would address, but I was so v wrong, me and drama broke up bitterly and I felt insulted and furious. Not here, this is so sharp, current and genuine and the acting is sooooo seamless, even Miriam (I'm not a fan), her best job in the biz ever.
But I'm a fangirl of Shawn Yue:
I don't think he's there yet to replace a TonyLeung, not even a young Andy in box office draw alone, but every work I've seen him in, he's improved. I see a drive, a conviction in him towards a better actor. In my eyes, he is the most gorgeous and pretty and manly 30sth HK movie actor, and here, he's sooo breathing this role of a kinda douchy everyday HK manchild, who is so ordinary you can't make up mind whether you like him or not, with that handsome face! and honestly that's beside the point, after spending time with his Jimmy and Miriam's Cherie, they feel like flawed friends you've known forever, and you care, genuinely care about them not because of the sparkling qualities they possess (not much really), but they r folks u may call family. Most importantly I see Shawn sternly eying better quality stuff in HK, rare to find nowadays and it's not without commercial sacrifices, many of which an AndyLau (yeah, I'm the rare woman that really can't stand actorAndyLau) will never give up.
It won't translate well at all, it's light at first glance in the slightly cheeky HK contemporary romcom way, but the flow of the movie shocked me in how very profoundly slice-of-life and there's a depth and realness to every ebb and flow for our characters, tweaked a little to service the clientele of mainland audience, but not much, never contrived, nor lazy and that's exactly what makes it special and so tugging my heartstrings. It proves not EVERY HK-sino collab has to be extravaganza CG/action crappy p0rn. What a sigh of relief!! And this is giving the genre a good name. *I can't rem across all movielands giving me sth still in the boundaries of chickcflick/romcom yet not asking me to park brains at door and just enjoy the shallow pretty, and swallow big gulps of shrill and boring formularic cliches. Everyone in it is used appropriately, some most brilliant cameos I hate spoiling. One thing I'll stress, at least YangMi is not asked to be a bikini-clad road kill vase and is giving a bit of real meat(kekeke) to her character.
It reminds me esp of ITWY and how much I was disgusted with it because they both used some similar deus ex machina, eg karaoke of a generational memory of an old pop fav. It was cringeworthy!fail for me in ITWY because it just hammered in the point ad nauseum how unreal and annoying that caricature of a hollow woman YC is, the owner of polar opposite character traits humanly impossible, and she's supposed to represent a younger me. NOPE, hell no! In Love in the Buff, that moment is aptly used, without all exclamations of self-importance as every scene ITWY is grating on my nerves. Where ITWY is pure shrill, LitP takes the same content and spin it into something organic that resonates.
*spoilerish* The ending is jabbed as too neat and 'happy' but not necessarily so to me. I don't see them as happily ever after. IF PD/writer Pang decides to make a part trois, I can see Cherie being a single mom raising a kid she has with Jimmy by accident but the grinding of the day to day exacerbates their problems, the loving feelings all burnt up by the mundane. In many ways it remind me of the MNIKSS ending, some may say it's 'open' not a proper satisfying 'ending', but in my lens it's most real: it reiterates the point the OTP loves each other, that very moment, it's not in the grandest most romantic exaggeration of they r made for each other, completing each other like nobody possibly can on the planet forever and ever, no, that's so not the samsoon and samshik we spent time with 16 eps long. They still r their stubborn, flawed selves, and together they may bring the worst and best out of each other, but even if things r not perfect, we can all still enjoy love and being loved, at that very precious moment in life we part with them, where they live the moment in love and being loved back by that very person occupying most of his/her conscious, nth else matters as much, even if it should, it doesn't even need to be happily ever after when this moment is happiness in a snapshot, and they r at the point of their lives to know this is something so rare, has to be treasured as is, there's no lofty guarantees in life. I can perfectly live with Jimmy and Cherie having another fight fight and break up in another wk after the last shot, just like falling in love in RL, it doesnt diminish what we experienced during the journey even if the ending is not perfect, life is not perfect and we all end in….death.
In non-worddiarrhea, if you are as sorely disappointed and filled to the brink with rants still with ITWY as I'm, Love in the Buff, totally unrelated, correct that wrong for me.