After a thirteen-year imprisonment for the kidnap and murder of a six-year-old boy, Guem-Ja Lee seeks vengeance on the man truly responsible for the boy's death. With the help of fellow ... See full summary »
While both participating in a production of "Death of a Salesman," a teacher's wife is assaulted in her new home, which leaves him determined to find the perpetrator over his wife's traumatized objections.
1930s Korea, in the period of Japanese occupation, a new girl (Sookee) is hired as a handmaiden to a Japanese heiress (Hideko) who lives a secluded life on a large countryside estate with her domineering Uncle (Kouzuki). But the maid has a secret. She is a pickpocket recruited by a swindler posing as a Japanese Count to help him seduce the Lady to elope with him, rob her of her fortune, and lock her up in a madhouse. The plan seems to proceed according to plan until Sookee and Hideko discover some unexpected emotions. Written by
Mercury is a slow (typically chronic not acute) poison that will kill victims over a period of days not within minutes. Metallic mercury in the tiny amounts presented would not be lethal at all in the circumstances shown. See more »
It would have been better if I was never born. To have never taken a breath and live.
See more »
It it preposterous that, at the time of this review, The Handmaiden had an 8.1 rating on IMDb which would make it the equal of such films as: The Wizard of Oz, The Grapes of Wrath, the Best Years of our Lives and Annie Hall. And that would rank it higher than Shane, The African Queen, The Searchers, and Sophie's Choice. All of the aforementioned films are among the top 100 films of all time, according to the AFI. Nor was this movie overrated by one demographic group.
This movie did not have an MPAA rating but would certainly have deserved an X rating with the number of explicit sexual scenes. None of this would matter if the sexuality needed to be so explicit to advance the plot. It didn't.
There are movies which are fundamentally about a sexual relationship, and are honest about it, such as The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover or the Last Tango in Paris. One should expect THESE films to be quite explicit. The Handmaiden is NOT such a film. There IS a story being told and EVEN THOUGH the father is quite depraved it is not necessary to exploit this in telling the story. In fact, it is a diversion from the telling of the main story line.
So why was the story told in this way? The answer is clear: sex sells. It even sold a substantial number of those who reviewed the film at IMDb. Amazon appears to have mastered the use of the sensational. Now it is true that there is some excellent cinematography, but that cannot redeem this film.
Clearly, a film goer cannot depend on IMDb or even on the combined ratings of the critics to find worthy entertainment. More caution is required.
37 of 66 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this