Life Is Cheap . . . But Toilet Paper Is Expensive
Antonella Bonfanti is the BAMPFA Film Collection supervisor.
Spencer Nakasako, Cora Miao, Victor Wong, Cinda Hui,
The spirit of independence that runs through Wang’s films finds its most audacious expression in this newly restored and remastered tale of an urban cowboy tasked with delivering a briefcase to a mob boss. The plot takes a back seat in this movie, shot on location in Hong Kong, as the unnamed protagonist encounters an array of characters from across the social spectrum. Structured as a series of monologic portraits based on local newspaper stories, punctuated with bloody visions and featuring a circuitous foot chase and a femme fatale named Money, Life Is Cheap implicates the power relations of a boomtown in flux.