This is the perfect jumping-off point
for anyone curious about diving into Asian Shock Cinema.
It contains 3 Extreme Tales,
that encompass the brunt of what Asia has to offer.
For those interested in creepy gross-out fests;
Fruit Chan's "Dumplings" will deliver.
For those interested in tales of vengeance;
Chan Wook-Park's "Cut" will leave you in pieces.
And for those seeking a ghost story;
Takashi Miike's "The Box" will haunt you.
I personally ordered this flick twice from Amazon;
- once for myself
- and once for a friend of mine who also loves Eastern Horror
To both my suprise and delight, this is a 2-disc set
The second disc containing the full version of "Dumplings",
which quite honestly, is worth the purchase alone.
Anyways ... on to the movies:
Fruit Chan's "Dumplings"
is easily the most extreme of the 3.
It tells the tale of a woman, whose Home-made Dumplings can restore the youth of anyone who can afford them.
Subsequently, she also runs a clinic out of the back of her shop, where she aquires her youthful ingredients.
Needless to say:
This one is not for The Feint of Heart or Weak of Stomach.
Chan Wook Park's "Cut"
is the most intense of of the 3 Extremes.
More than once it had me on the edge of my futon.
Another tale of of retribution, from the man who masters in the subject.
This tale concerns a POMPOUS director,
who is kidnapped by a demented extra he once employed.
Tied up with a giant rubber-band, that allows for minimum movement,
he must make the most dire decision of his life.
Is he willing to take the life of a little girl to save his wifes?
Takashi Miike's "The Box"
is the most artistic of the 3,
yet sadly, it's the least extreme.
For those who know his work, you will be thoroughly disappointed.
For those who don't know his work (good for you, you may enjoy this)
he is the most extreme of the extreme.
So Extreme "Showtime" wouldn't air his episode of "Masters of Horror" due to graphic content.
(Interesting Side Note:
"Showtime does however play "Ichi the Killer" & "Gozu" - Go Figure)
Anyway he's a cult favorite in both America and his native Japan.
The guy practically screams "extreme" from hemisphere to hemisphere,
so naturally, he seemed like a shoe-in for this project.
Regretfully though, his installment is totally not "Miike"
But since you don't know of his work, it should be fine.
Whatever the case may be....
This ghost tale revolves around 2 Sisters (Sound Familiar?)
Both of whom fall in love with their dance instructor.
The one sister becomes jealous when she finds the other is intimately involved with the trainer, so naturally she locks her sister in a box to keep her safe. (Sounds Rational)
- Loads of artsy atmosphere, gorgeous settings, and enough chills to keep you on ice; but ulimately none of that could save me from the impending confusion, and dare-I-say, boredom that ensued.
- Maybe if you've never seen a "Miike" film before you'll enjoy this one, or maybe if you still like "Ringu" you'll get a kick out of it.
But for me..........
when I order Wheat, I don't want rye.(If you catch my drift)
MORAL OF THE STORY:
Youth has its price
Fame has its price
Love has its price
These are the 3 Extremes