The Handmaiden (2017)

by | Feb 7, 2017 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews

An interesting plot-driven film with quite a twist.

The Handmaiden (2017)

Actors: Min-hee Kim, Jung-woo Ha, Tae Kim, Jin-woong Jo, Hae-suk Kim
Director: Chan-wook Park
Studio: Amazon Studios/ Sony Pictures Home Ent. 49278 (1/24/17)
Video: 2.39:1 for 16:9 screens
Audio: Korean DD 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
Length: 145 min.
Rating: ****1/2

The same director has already given us Old Boy and Stoker, and this is a ravishing crime drama based on a book by a British author providing a singular, no-holds-barred yet stylish viewing experience from Park. It is a complex tale at heart of a young moneyed Japanese lady living on a secluded estate during the time of the Japanese conquest of Korea, with a young Korean woman hired to serve as her new handmaiden.  The Korean woman secretly plots with a con man to defraud the Japanese lady of her large inheritance, but there is quite a twist.

There are almost shocking scenes of the two women having sex. This film should appeal to the lesbians reading this strongly, but it is also an amazing viewing experience that you will just have to see for yourself to find out how it all plays out. I must admit that some of it was over my head, but the two leading ladies are terrific actresses and the cinematography is gorgeous. It is a highly-recommended foreign film for sure.

—John Sunier

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