My Blueberry NightsDirector: Wong Kar-Wai
Legendary filmmaker Wong Kar-Wai directs Jude Law, Natalie Portman, Rachel Weisz, and Norah Jones in his first English-language feature film -- a romantic road movie detailing the cross-country journey of a woman who sets off across the United States in hopes of mending her broken heart. Elizabeth (Jones) has just been through a particularly nasty breakup, and now she's ready to leave her friends and memories behind as she chases her dreams across the country. In order to support herself on her journey, Elizabeth picks up a series of waitress jobs along the way. As Elizabeth crosses paths with a series of lost souls whose yearnings are even greater than her own -- including a troubled cop (David Strathairn), his estranged wife (Rachel Weisz), and an embittered gambler (Natalie Portman) -- their emotional turmoil ultimately helps her gain a greater understanding of her own problems.
- Release Date:
- Original Release:
- Weinstein Company
- Region Code:
- [Wide Screen]
- Sales rank:
Cast & Crew
|Rachel Weisz||Sue Lynne|
|Wong Kar-Wai||Director,Original Story,Producer,Screenwriter|
|Lawrence Block||Original Story,Screenwriter|
|Alice Chan||Executive Producer|
|Ry Cooder||Score Composer|
|Sharon Globerson||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|Guadalupe Jolicoeur||Musical Direction/Supervision|
|Drew Kunin||Sound/Sound Designer|
|Steve Macklam||Musical Direction/Supervision|
|Suk Ping||Costumes/Costume Designer,Editor,Production Designer|
|William Chang Suk-Ping||Costumes/Costume Designer,Editor,Production Designer|
|Jackie Pang Yee Wah||Producer|
|Chan Ye-Cheng||Co-producer,Executive Producer|
1. Elizabeth [5:07]
2. Jeremy [3:00]
3. Key Stories [4:01]
4. Bloody Noses [3:01]
5. Surveillance Tape [4:56]
6. Memphis [5:16]
7. Sue Lynne [4:50]
8. Better On Paper [3:45]
9. End of the Road [5:27]
10. Arnie's Tab [4:20]
11. Too Much Love [4:42]
12. Settling Up [1:53]
13. Lonely Nights [2:19]
14. Katya [3:44]
15. Leslie [3:42]
16. All In [5:44]
17. Road to Vegas [2:10]
18. Avoiding the Truth [3:32]
19. He's Gone [2:38]
20. The Cards Turned [5:01]
21. Return to NY [3:34]
22. The Kiss [4:09]
23. End Credits [3:05]
Captions & Subtitles
English for the Hearing Impaired
Making My Blueberry Nights
Q&A With Director Wong Kar Wai
Location Scout Photos
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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I was very disappointed with this film. It wasn't the acting; Rachel Weisz, Natalie Portman, David Strathairn and Jude Law (not one of my favorites) put in fantastic performances that puts other movies to shame. Even Norah Jones shows some chops, though she's far less a complex character than those portrayed by her comrades. It's not the soundtrack, with a fantastic mix of jazz and R&B from Mavis Staples, Otis Redding, Ruth Brown, Cassandra Wilson, Cat Powers, Ry Cooder, and the aforementioned Jones. Instead this movie is undone by director Wong Kar-Wai, who's Hong Kong film resume does him no good as mediocre camerawork and an unsteady pace keep this movie from being very good. It's watchable, but could have been done much better with someone else at the helm.
For those who were unenthused/disappointed by Blueberry Nights check out the Criterion edition of Chungking Express. This was Wong Kar Wai's original film (shot in two weeks during a break from filming Ashes of Time) and is, IMO, brilliant and one of my all time favorites. Yes, you'll have to read subtitles but for an exploration of relationships, choices and luck/opportunity shot in a visually stunning style (see Christopher Doyle), Chungking Express is the film you want to see. IMO, Blueberry Nights suffers from the all too typical Hollywood arrogance: take a red-hot foreign director (WKW), give them a Hollywood budget (hence the presence of the cast), rewrite one of their art-house hits (CE) but with an "American" viewpoint and then oversee it to the point where the original brilliance is muddled. It's not a terrible film, the acting is solid but the storylines demand an innate understanding of the culture/people. Chungking Express captures these nuances while in Blueberry Nights they seem forced (pie, road trips, cafés and dive bars, poker, Las Vegas?). Watch the Criterion edition of Chungking Express, it's worth it!
Some of the movie was, well...kinda meh, and the movie itself was kind of B grade quality, but the actors did a good job, and the story was pretty good, so it is a movie at least worth seeing once. I went ahead and bought it, because I like the actors in it, and I have always kind of liked Norah Jones' music...and she didn't do too bad of a job in this. I would recommend that if you like romance/drama to go ahead and give it at least one watch.
Wong Kar-Wai's "My Blueberry Nights" is the cinematic equivalent of the blueberry pie its protagonist, Elizabeth (Norah Jones), eats so much of: it's tasty and filling, but not a very substantial meal.
The performances are solid, and comprise an all-star cast -- Jude Law as Jeremy, the owner of the diner where Elizabeth goes to seek refuge from her emotional pain; David Strathairn and Rachel Weisz as (respectively) Arnie, an alcoholic cop, and Sue Lynne, his estranged wife; and Natalie Portman as Leslie, a top-notch poker player. The story is pretty straightforward, as Elizabeth goes cross-country to discover herself, and gains a better understanding of who she is as a person through her interactions with these other lost souls.
Unfortunately, Wong's arthouse direction and cinematography, with the recurring motifs of the elevated train roaring overhead and the time-lapsed loop of the ice cream melting into the blueberry pie, distance the viewer from the story and characters when you'd expect to be drawn in. It's hard to care much for any of these people or feel bad when they face their various tragedies, and it's a credit to the actors you feel anything at all.
Beautiful and different love story movie, it is not a chik flik. I've seen it 3 times and every time I learn something more about the meaning of the stories. A piece of advise... when you watch it be sure to have a pie and vanilla ice cream next to you, other wise you'll be drooling the hole movie :)
Kar Wai Wong is as much a visual artist as a film director and his forté has always been making beautiful, multileveled images on a screen that is trying to see clearly the outlines of character development. Such is the case in his first English language film MY BLUEBERRY NIGHTS, a creation he wrote (with Lawrence Block) as well as directed. While the 'story' boasts a cast of fine actors, the emphasis seems less on character delineation than on creating a cinematic stream of consciousness. A New York Russian bakery/café is operated by immigrant Jeremy (Jude Law) and into this milieu comes the newly jilted Elizabeth (Norah Jones - who also provides much of he sound track singing for the film). She leaves her boyfriend's keys with Jeremy as a sign of resignation but continues to nightly check to see if her ex-boyfriend has shown up to claim them. This is the premise for the formation of a bond between Jeremy and Elizabeth, but without solidifying that bond, Elizabeth runs off to greener pastures. She settles in Tennessee where she finds work as both a waitress and a bar maid and meets the down and out alcoholic policeman Arlo (David Strathairn) who pines away for his tacky, gallivanting wife Sue Lynne (Rachel Weisz). Leaving that story piece unresolved, Elizabeth then moves to Las Vegas where she becomes friends with a young, loser gambler Leslie (Natalie Portman) who manages to waste Elizabeth's savings for a car on yet another misjudged gambling night. Through this cavalcade of losers Elizabeth continues to write postcards to Jeremy and the ending is blatantly predictable. There are some moments of memorable dialog: 'Sometimes, even if you have the keys those doors still can't be opened. Can they? ' 'Even if the door is open, the person you're looking for may not be there'. But for the most part this is a visual feast for those who love Kar Wai Wong's genre. The plot is thin as is the dialogue and the actors work to make the most of the outlines of conversation that they embellish with their own spontaneous words. If it feels improvised to the viewer then the viewer has entered the realm of Kar Wai Wong. This is a film for art film lovers - it is very beautiful to watch! Grady Harp
I really liked this movie with one major exception. The acting was well-done, I liked the story line, loved the romance. However, the director (with whom I am not familiar, so maybe something went over my head) loved these kind of slow motion shots of like, a train going by, or some kind of scenery, with background music, but nothing important to the plot. It would have been fine if he'd done it a couple of times, but seriously, it was every 10 minutes. I ended up just fast forwarding through most of those little stanzas. It just got annoying. All of that said - it was a really good movie otherwise.