‘Love After Love’ Review: Ann Hui’s Pretty, Empty Melodrama Set in Pre-War Hong Kong

Once more with rather less feeling: after “Love in a Fallen City” and “Eighteen Springs,” acclaimed Hong Kong director Ann Hui returns to the work of celebrated 20th century author Eileen Chang with “Love After Love,” a not-at-all-short adaptation of a Chang short story laboring under the English title “Aloeswood Incense: The First Brazier.” Hui has assembled something of an all-star lineup, with the young leads played by rising actors Sandra Ma and Eddie Peng, the legendary Ryuichi Sakamoto on scoring duties and Dp Christopher Doyle returning to the scene, if not quite the time period, of his greatest Wong Kar-wai collaboration, “In the Mood For Love.” Despite all this promise,Tracking the very gentle wising-up of a naive, wide-eyed ingenue over the course of a few eventful pre-war years, the film begins as Weilong (Ma), a Shanghainese student come to Hong Kong to finish her education away from her stifling father’s influence,

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