To Seduce an Enemy

Hong Kong, 2003
Original title: Yau yen faan jiu

Director: Bowie Lau
Starring: Teresa Mak, Jewel Lee, Winnie Leung
IMDB: 3.8

Finding the choicest hidden gems of obscure and twisted cinema can be like searching for a needle in a haystack at times. Unfortunately this time round there was nothing but hay. Admittedly, my copy was dubbed from Mandarin into Cantonese and also had out of sync and dodgy subtitles which didn't help matters. But even so...

The cheesy soft-porn music played in the title sequence while a semi-clad Winnie Leung posed in slow-mo set the tone quite accurately from the get go, and I really should have bailed on it at that point. However I am always one to give a film a fair crack, and to be fair, it did start to look promising in the first 10 minutes.

First we meet Mrs Siu who has hired a private detective to expose her husbands secret affairs. Mr Siu has become enormously wealthy, and we see him strut into his office, get a blowjob in the elevator from one woman, shag an office girl next to the water cooler, and then do his secretary on his office desk. This guy must love coming to work!

Unfortunately for him, his wife now has evidence of his infidelity and intends to divorce him, which for reasons unknown will ruin him. Unfortunately for her, he is an ex-psychologist versed in the art of hypnotism who has foreseen this eventuality.

He hypnotises her and sends her off to kill the detective and then kill herself. The kill is satisfactorily bloody, with the lovely Mrs Siu being covered in blood.

At this point in the movie, I'm thinking we could have quite a sexy 'seduce and kill' flick on our hands - unfortunately the standard drops fairly quickly from there. Especially with the appearance of the intensely annoying Winnie Leung as a naive paparazzi.

However her gorgeous friend Ting has just started working for Mr Siu and its not long before she catches his eye and is hypnotised, raped and killed too.

The cops are on his trail though, and we get to meet a bumbling detective and his female partner who happens to be a kick-ass martial artist. A couple of lame fight sequences ensue, interspersed with many a lame sex scene, and even a bit of sapphic love. All accompanied with the aforementioned cheesy soft core porn music.

Not that I have anything against gratuitous nudity, especially when the actresses are all very attractive. But these go on far too long, and the director went out of his way to not actually show anything. At least I'm pretty sure that nothing was shown - my finger was impatiently pressing the fast-forward button throughout.

The story was actually quite an interesting idea, but the whole thing just seemed cheap and poorly made. I was very surprised to see this was made in 2003, seemed more like 1993 to me. Unfortunately, this one can't be recommended.

Rating: 3/10

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