Dave's Rating:


… gruesome …

Who's in It: Bai Ling, Tony Leung Ka Fai

The Basics: Three short horror films by three acclaimed Asian directors — Fruit Chan (Public Toilet), Takashi Miike (Ichi the Killer) and Park Chan-wook (Oldboy).

What's the Deal? In Fruit Chan's Dumplings — a gruesome fable about the ultimate spa facial — impossible beauty standards, the toxic side-effects of fame, the institution of marriage and the very dangerous social place occupied by female babies in China are all eviscerated.

What's the Deal? Part II: Park Chan-wook's Cut is a booby-trapped Twilight Zone episode about a kind, decent film director forced to see the evil he carries inside when a madman puts him in a no-win life-or-death situation.

What's the Deal? Part III: Takashi Miike's Box is a change of pace from his usual gross-out antics. A young novelist has recurring dreams of being buried in a box. Flashbacks tell the story of how she was somewhat responsible for the death of her twin sister.

Why So Vague, Dave? Because there are spoilers in almost every scene.

A Draw: You go for Miike because he never fails to kick you in the stomach and shock your system, and Park's freakishly entertaining thesis about revenge is an ongoing one, but it's Chan's gut-churning fantasy, made all the more lurid and oddly beautiful by Christopher Doyle's incredible cinematography, that'll pin you to your seat. Maybe give you dry heaves, too.

No Hollywood Adaptations, Guaranteed! Sarah Michelle Gellar, it's safe to say, won't be starring in the American Dumplings remake. Its Swift-ian premise pretty much guarantees that there won't even be one made.


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