‘Lust. Caution’ ~ a review


Had a strange few days. But that’s over now. Then, cos today (Wednesday) is the day after this year’s Mid-Autumn Festival and therefore a public holiday, we watched the new Ang Lee angst-fest, otherwise known as ‘Lust / Caution’, and yay, it was proper.

Buying the tickets was quite weird an’ all – went to the counter, asked the bird fer two tickets fert 4pm showing. She looked at me and asked if I were taking one of the tickets, and was me friend like me. “What, foreign?” I ask innocently, waiting for the very considerate warning about how it’s not in English but will contain subtitles for my convenience. But no, ah, wait a minute – her reply? “No, old people.” So apparently I am old people and can watch the film.

“I iz old, it can be category three film time now pleez?”

So we watched it, and we loved it. Mostly cos the story’s the star, and everyone merely players therein. And of course Tony Leung Chiu-Wai always cuts an impressive swathe through any scenery he’s put into. He can’t help it. He spends about 165 mins (yes, 165 mins) being Mr Suave, Mr Cruel and Mr Oh Noez! (pretty much in that order). Seriously dude, watch the scene in the deserted restaurant, and if yer a girl and yer not drooling, you have plumbing problems. While he’s always been on my ‘aww, cotton socks!’ list cos he’s so wee and lovely, he’s also on my ‘ooh you vicious little bugger!’ list too, and this film ably demonstrates why.

Do not watch this if the odd bit of sexual violence disturbs you. Or in fact watching them pretty much cover half of the Kama Sutra without pausing for breath.

Although, I have to say, he did most of his best work here, and I’m not being funny. You’d have to see it to understand. It’s complicated.

Anyway, Wei Tang, playing the heroine, gave a brilliant performance, as did in fact everyone. There were times Wang Lee-Hom’s chiselled face didn’t quite cut it for me, but even he did much better than some of the cack he’s been involved with over his relatively short career. The scenes were beautifully shot and scripted, the camera work superb, and I have to say the music – not from Yo-Yo Ma or Shigeru Umebayashi or any of the other Wong Ka-Wai faithfuls, but Alexandre Desplat – was very, very good. We like. It gave everything a timeless feel, and yet in moments of extreme emotion, it was strangely silent. Very well done, I thought. All-in-all it’s one ‘war’ film I actually enjoyed.

The questions remain over the use of ‘stunt bums’, as the lead actors did have stand-ins credited. I only share this info cos we were watching some recently-discovered (by us) ‘Doctor bloody Who’ footage. It featured one Mr John Barrowman, pointing out the stand-ins for the Big Damn Heroes who are the Doctor, Martha and of course Captain Jack, do all the dangerous things that the actual insured actors can’t do – like sit in cars when they’re stationary.

Anyway, the point was that wee Tony isn’t so wee, and is altogether very fit when he’s in the altogether. Bearing in mind this was a category III film here in Hong Kong, which means you have to show ID to get in if they think yer under 18 years old. (No, they didn’t ask us. We obviously look 19, the pair of us.)

Apart from that, really have to chuck out my Mid-Autumn Festival Lantern from this year’s efforts, as the music is already turning me into a psychotic drunk. No wait…

Anyway, that’s yer onion. Have to go and relieve some aching muscles in a hot bath, then brave my painfully crappy mattress for the last few nights, before it’s consigned to the IKEA exchange truck.

Soopytwist.

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4 'aye's:

Camera Obscura said...

I've always loved that clip:

"David! I've got cake!"

"Whoo-hoo!"

FOUR DINNERS said...

"Cake"? 'ang on I've missed some'at. Back in a sec

FOUR DINNERS said...

Nope. Can't see cake anywhere. Onion gets a mention but no cake.

Anyroad. Sex n violence n the Kama Sutra eh?

It's a must for me then

Soupdragon said...

David and John really are fab together, aren't they?

:)

4D: cake were in the YouTube clip. Very nice. on so many levels...

You might like the film, but would have to sit through a lot of plot before you reach the soft porn, LOL

:)