Amphetamineby Bianca Fernandes / 16.10.2010
This movie is not at all what you’d expect from the frequently tried and tested takes on druggie culture. Instead of being about drug addiction, it has a much fresher approach and never resorts to every scene involving the use of drugs, getting drugs, getting caught and expressing remorse. Drugs play a central but much smaller role in the film, although they are a relevant aspect to the situations the characters make for themselves. Instead it offers a brilliant and unseen slice of modern Chinese culture and Hong Kong city life.
The story runs like this, boy meets boy, boy fucks girl, boy fucks boy, boy falls in love with boy. The travails of an addicted swimming instructor and a Hong Kong businessman are definitely not as dull as they might sound, with shocking scenes, both powerful and meaningful and an ending full of spirit and soul.
The characters and their actions on screen are represented in a way that liberates the viewer, helped largely by the soundtrack and colourful visuals. The story of rich guy, poor guy has been told before, but Amphetamine twists and turns it upside down and inside out, using deft touches of CGI to enhance the fanttasy, thereby creating a cultural masterpiece.
A film of adventure and uncontrollable connection, the boys contradict the paths of their lives as nothing they do and no issues they have, and trust me, there are many, can combat their love.
Instead of meaningless nakedness, the film beautifies the male body with breathtaking scenes of love that may leave you speechless while sending a million thoughts racing through your head. Flashes from the past are clarified as the film reaches towards resolution, so that by the end everything makes sense and sits perfectly in your heart and mind.
Directed by Scud, the film runs for 97mins in Cantonese with English subtitles.
*The film screens in JHB on Saturday the 16th, 5.30pm at Nu metro Hyde Park and Cape Town on Saturday the 23rd, 5.30pm at The Foxy on Broadway.