Three Extremes: Some More Thoughts

Upon further reflection, I realized that a big subtext of Three Extremes, whether directly implied or otherwise, involved the inequalities between the sexes that still exist.

SPOILERS follow:

In Dumpling, we see the ex soap opera actress going to extreme lengths to preserve her looks. Her reasoning is simple. She wants to hold on to her husband, a wealthy man who a) is older than her and b) already has a mistress. Thus she has no qualms about downing the dumplings with their very dubious content. The most desirable secret ingredient is actually one of the bitter ironies of this short and is what makes it so effective. In Cut, the madman who holds the horror movie director and his wife hostage is finally dispatched by the wife. But, in a stunning reversal, the director is so shamed at having being humiliated in front of his wife, he strangles her. And finally, in Box, two young girls compete, perhaps fatally, for the attentions of an older man.

Inasmuch as films are windows into different worlds, these shorts raise disturbing questions about the societies they portray and the roles of women therein.

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- April 27, 2005 12:10 AM // Film