Love in a Puff

Here is a romantic comedy set in modern-day Hong Kong, with attractive, intelligent, witty protagonists. The "meet cute" aspect is covered by a voiceover that tells us of Hong Kong's smoking restrictions. This explains why a gang of smokers meet regularly in an alleyway for a cigarette break.

This is merely an excuse for a series of bawdy insults and anecdotes shared around the smoky group and a quick gossipy overview of some of the smokers: Who is single (and why), who is a coworker and who "puts out." As "sin taxes" on cigarettes are increased, our two main characters end up on a trek around the city, searching out supplies of smokes as the city stocks up against the higher prices.

The script is clever but raunchy and we want the two appealing leads to finally get together, but there is soooo much talk, talk, talk...and text, text, text. (I find it interesting that text messaging is a central device in many of this year's Seattle International Film Festival selections.)