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Three... Extremes

Three... Extremes
Lee Byung-Hun, Lim Won-Hee and Gang Hye-Jung

Rated: R
Reviewed by: Jim  
Release date: October 28, 2005 Released by: Lions Gate Films

Three of Asia's more radical auteurs combine their talents on Three... Extremes.

From the studio that is profitting on the success of Saw II, those fans who don't mind subtitles may be drawn to a trio of diverse, if often wicked horror films.

The first, which actually is available in feature length, is arguably the most explicit.

The lensing of Christopher Doyle (Hero) gives zest to "Dumplings" which centers on Auntie Mei, a very persuasive Bai Ling (Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow). She has secret ingredients in a recipe for women looking to be eternally youthful.

The entertaining, but rather disgusting "Dumplings" also has a couple of lurid sequences involving a pregnant schoolgirl.

South Korean filmmaker Park Chanwook provides plenty of violence in "Cut" where a successful director is held hostage by a stranger. Park's "Oldboy" had some of the same type of vengeance-inspired mood as this episode has.

The last short subject of this anthology is "Box" from wild Japanese director Takashi Miike. "Box" is more low-key than much of his oeuvre, elegantly crafted, and rather subliminal. It centers on a successful novelist haunted by something from her family's past when she was 10-years-old.

If Three... Extremes doesn't exceed the sum of its intense, macabre parts, it's a slick, if unnerving creep show influenced by the likes of Stephen King and Edgar Allan Poe.

  Frank Chris Tony Jim Howard Jennifer Kathleen  Avg. 
Three... Extremes       B       B

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