Thursday, January 29, 2009
The Wayward Cloud is a sequel to What Time Is It There? While not quite as aesthetically pleasing as its predecessor, this cloud is mostly silver linings.
The young watch-seller from What Time Is It There? continues his voyage along the margins of capitalism, moving from the sale of tacky baubles and plasticized crap to the Taiwanese adult film industry. The female object of his obsession has returned from Paris and is now busily responding to a terrible drought in her home country by collecting discarded plastic bottles, filling them with water, and stashing them around her house.
This is a deeply funny film, but only if you think David Lynch and Stanley Kubrick are hilarious. It functions with the anarchistic gusto of Goddard's Weekend or Pierrot le Fou. Director Ming Ling-Tsai is boldly silly, and unafraid of repulsive images. A quite refreshing film-maker. This is an inventive, raunchy, ridiculous mix, and even includes some zany musical numbers with nods to Busby Berkely and The Umbrellas of Cherbourg.
There is a lot of sex and nudity and there are numerous graphic scenes: the main actor is making a porno, and part of the fun is how Ming pokes fun at that genre as well. A meditation on desire and need and priorities in late-phase capitalism.