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The Sensuous Cinema of Wong Kar-waiFilm Poetics and the Aesthetic of Disturbance$
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Gary Bettinson

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9789888139293

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888139293.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM HONG KONG SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hongkong.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hong Kong University Press, 2022. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HKSO for personal use.date: 03 July 2022

Wong Kar-wai and the Poetics of Hong Kong Cinema

Wong Kar-wai and the Poetics of Hong Kong Cinema

(p.1) 1 Wong Kar-wai and the Poetics of Hong Kong Cinema
The Sensuous Cinema of Wong Kar-wai

Gary Bettinson

Hong Kong University Press

Following a biographical sketch of Wong Kar-wai, the introductory chapter identifies several fallacies about Wong’s cinema that the rest of this book seeks to redress. It explicates the dominant critical mode to which Wong’s films have been subjected – culturalist theory – and indicates some significant shortcomings in this model. At the same time, it advocates a poetics approach to Wong’s cinema, highlighting the relative virtues of a formalist and cognitive analysis. Finally, the chapter defines and discusses Wong’s distinctive “aesthetic of disturbance,” an auteurist trait that unifies Wong’s films at the levels of audio-visual style, plotting, narration, and genre uptake.

Keywords:   Culturalism, Poetics, Ackbar Abbas, David Bordwell, Grand Theory, aesthetic of disturbance, film theory, cognitivism, Hong Kong, China

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