Ashes of Time Redux
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Master Hong Kong filmmaker Wong Kar-wai directed this lyrical, dream-like martial arts epic. A famously troubled shoot, the film took two years and 40 million dollars to produce (a shocking sum for a national cinema populated with low-budget quickies) and features a virtual who's-who of the Hong Kong film world. Conceived as a prequel to the popular martial arts novel The Eagle-Shooting Hero by Jin Yong, the movie is less a straightforward action thriller than a visually striking meditation on memory and love. It nominally centers on Ouyang Feng (Leslie Cheung), who ekes out a lonely… More
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 80%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"For this director's cut, Wong has trimmed several minutes and reorganized the narrative according to the passage of seasons, though the plot is still impenetrable."
‑ Andrea Gronvall, Chicago Reader
"Wong Kar Wai seems considerably more out of his depth than other Chinese filmmakers who have slummed in the martial arts genre. This can't compare to Chen Kaige's The Emperor and the Assassin or Yimou Zhang's House of Flying Daggers."
‑ Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel
"It's hard to recommend a film as frustratingly inaccessible as this one, but if you go into the theater expecting a trip to an art gallery, you might be pleasantly surprised."
‑ Sonny Bunch, Washington Times
"It's like watching paint dry--which isn't very exciting, however pretty the colors."
‑ Frank Swietek, One Guy's Opinion
"I know Kar Wai's got a fanbase, but to me he's equivalent to a recent film school graduate using all of the post-production tricks that he's learned, either to show off what he's learned or to cover up his lack of talent."
‑ Austin Kennedy, Sin Magazine
"Wong Kar-Wai doesn't supply much of a plot with a narrative engine to pull us through."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"The kicks are more to the head and heart than to the body."
‑ Peter Howell, Toronto Star
"Redux clocks in at a slightly shorter running time than any of the previous versions Wong has offered. The tighter edit is a better fit, but ultimately, it's not enough."
‑ Rob Boylan, Orlando Weekly
"Ashes of Time Redux, like that line from Hey Jude, takes a sad song and makes it better."
‑ Duane Dudek, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
"Wong's film is to be appreciated as poetry on film, an aphorism-filled ode to lovestruck dreamers, and for its beautifully rendered images."
‑ Michael Smith, Tulsa World
"I struggled to engage with the archetypes contained within the images, even with all that meticulously restored golden-yellow sand."
‑ Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune
"Ashes of Time Redux is primarily a sensory experience that deserves to be seen on as big a screen as possible."
‑ Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald
"The film's imagery is its most striking asset, creating an impressionistic sense of both vastness and intimacy that frequently overwhelms the characters and their problems."
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"Wong Kar Wai could make even a compost heap look as gorgeous as a Vermeer."
‑ Chris Hewitt (St. Paul), St. Paul Pioneer Press
"The motion picture as mood ring."
‑ Matt Brunson, Creative Loafing
More reviews for Ashes of Time Redux on Rotten Tomatoes