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The Longest Night in Shanghai (2007) – English Review


Love and language barriers.

The Longest Night in Shanghai is China’s and Japan’s answer to Lost in Translation. A Japanese makeup artist visits Shanghai for a day but he gets lost. He’s hit by a female taxi driver, and he ends up being with her all night. Both of them struggle with love problems, and along the way, they try to help each other. And it feels like there’s some love in the air between these two.

Here we have a well-acted movie with a great atmosphere in the streets of Shanghai in the middle of the night combined with beautiful music that sometimes evokes emotions. I have always had a crush on Zhao Wei. She’s very cute with her big eyes, and she seems natural. She is, as usual, solid. She has always been one of my favorite Chinese actors. She reminds me a bit of Shu Qi in terms of charm. But Zhao Wei has talent as an actor, something Shu Qi lacks. Shu Qi can cry and smile, but other than that, she lacks so much as an actor. And Zhao Wei is prettier too!

If you compare The Longest Night in Shanghai with Lost in Translation, The Longest Night in Shanghai seems a little distant and cold. The first half is the best before it slows down. We have the main story and some other subplots, but some of the subplots don’t go anywhere.

One of the best and funniest subplots is with Naoto Takenaka, who plays an eccentric man who’s a big fan of Bruce Lee. Naoto Takenaka is in his ace in these scenes with his crazy energy. Otherwise, several subplots feel meaningless. It’s the main story which of course, carries the entire movie. Will there be something between these two?

Love is like a roller-coaster ride. Some never dare to open up until it’s too late. Broken hearts, snot, and tears will follow, but life goes on. If you liked Lost in Translation, you may appreciate this lighter version with two brilliant role interpretations by Zhao Wei and Masahiro Motoki.

Rating: 7/10

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