by Kleitia Vaso

Observing, invisible, a scene of a couple whom I have known very well since their fiery and promising beginnings, the movie 2046 passed through my head. Actually, as with any beautiful thing or event, I only remember fragments of this both striking and uneven movie, but what I remember comes back whole and vivid, accompanied by the magnificent score.

The recurring fragments usually provide meaning for specific situations or imbue a common episode with the beauty that sometimes life keeps for itself. In this case, I recalled the development of the relationship between a Chinese playboy who has lost his ability and, most importantly, desire to love, and the beautiful but expensive escort who firstly resists his advances, only to eventually fall in love with him. The nature of the relationship, however, is revealed in one definite act, namely, the money exchange between the two protagonists; in the beginning, the male protagonist pays for the company of the escort whom he really likes, both sexually and otherwise, and then, later, it is she who pays him teary-eyed and hurt, frustrated by the impossibility of moving beyond an invisible but impenetrable wall.

In fact, the link between this story and the real-life couple’s was not immediate, as I presented it in the introduction. In the actual moment I witnessed, I observed that he, who not long ago seemed almost hypnotized by her, was currently very calm and in control while it was she who was increasingly losing her cool demeanor and was temporarily coming apart. And, later, when the film and the real episode fused into one thought, inexplicably, I understood that every relationship includes an exchange and the oscillating tipping of scales; willingly or not, eventually you give for what you have received, and so on and so forth.

by Kleitia Vaso