The Wayward Cloud Screen 4 articles

The Wayward Cloud

2005

The Wayward Cloud Poster
  • Not really "improved"—I just needed to rewatch the entire film with foreknowledge of its bombshell of an ending. Having done so, I now feel comfortable declaring it Tsai's best film, not to mention a bolder and more devastating quasi-sequel than 2046. Seeing his familiar tropes employed in this hardcore context is as bracing an experience as I've had this year...

  • This film pushes Tsai into heretofore unseen realms of visual flourish and experimentation. The Wayward Cloud feels like Tsai’s least perfect film . . . and also his boldest. With Tsai’s trademark precise, static, yet inexplicably energizing mise-en-scène, The Wayward Cloud unfolds with an otherworldly, almost dreamlike logic.

  • Hinged on the secrecy and privacy of Hsiao-Kang, it generates a comedy and a tragedy of unknownness at the same time, together exploring ‘the joys and sorrows of being alone and of being with someone else’, a quintessential quality of film musical (Rosenbaum, 1996). Indeed, although without stylized movements, the sequence acquires a ‘musical’ quality—it goes for the spirit, if not the letter, of choreography.

  • Minimally plotted, circuitous and deeply strange, it is a film that springs some wholly unexpected and/or demented image on us at least every couple of minutes... [The] musical sequences have a curious, otherworldly rhythm, as if acted out in slow motion then speeded back up to regular pace in the edit. They are totally nuts, but will still leave you unprepared for the riskiness – the brazen, eye-widening shock value – of the set piece Tsai inflicts at the end.

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