The Handmaiden review: by Rob Stoakes
UK certification: TBC
Park Chan-wook is possibly a lunatic. You might not be familiar with his name, but you’ve definitely heard of Old Boy. If you haven’t seen Old Boy, by the way, I will hunt you down and eat your soul. But yeah, the man has a brand of insanity that is hard to place. His stories are all skeevy, with a violent and sexual edge that makes most of his films difficult to watch, but he then breaks it up with goofy slapstick. It’s like if Charles Manson made the Looney Tunes.
Take his most recent film, The Handmaiden. Wikipedia describes it as “an erotic psychological thriller”, but some of these scenes wouldn’t go amiss in a Minions picture. There are several pratfalls, an artist looking to his student to find an embarrassing stick figure on her canvas, and the main character stopping someone from hanging themselves and then dropping them while distracted. If the Curb Your Enthusiasm theme was in this, this would be the best comedy of the year. Continue reading