Pleasure factory

I just found out that my cousin’s a lead in this local film that’s to be released islandwide tomorrow. SO COOOOL!!

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By Jeanine Tan, TODAY | Posted: 24 October 2007 1101 hrs

RATING:

Pleasure Factory wants to be a frank exposition on the denizens of Singapore’s red light district, Geylang, but instead is a confusing experiment that one can hardly make head or tail out of.Directed by Ekachai Uekrongtham — who made his film debut helming the transsexual boxer biopic Beautiful Boxer — the film is structured around four separate stories: An NSman (Loo Zihan) is brought to Geylang by a buddy to help him lose his virginity, an art director (Ananda Everingham) ventures into Geylang and becomes acquainted with an older prostitute (Yang Kuei Mei) and her daughter, and a young hooker (Jeszlene Zhou) seeks the sweeter side of human contact when she’s off duty.Made in the mould of art-house cine- ma, the film makes use of sparse dialogue, extreme close-ups and moody lighting to tell its story — not that it necessarily works.Take the sparse dialogue, for example. Whether it’s an expression of the dominance of fleshly contact over emotional connection, or an attempt to allow the acting to convey meaning, it falls flat.

For one, with the exception of veteran Taiwanese actress Yang, the acting needs a lot of work.

The sex is plentiful, frank and, to be honest, overly long. If making the audience — a portion of whom would surely never venture into Geylang — uncomfortable with what goes on in the seedier side of Singapore is Uekrongtham’s intention, then he has succeeded.

But then uncomfortable soon becomes plain boring, or perhaps that is the point — that what seems titillating when you’re an outsider looking in, is really mundane once you’ve become the insider.

Either way, Pleasure Factory has a lot of art in its intentions, but whether it comes across in the right way is questionable.

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HMMM. That’s just a review. Can’t stop people from making their own comments about the movie. I hope it’s not R rated cause I really wanna catch my cousin’s debut film.

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