2018 Film Challenge: 4. The Handmaiden

A Korean and Japanese film, based on the novel Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. It’s a film that was recommended to me by a work colleague. I remember there was a BBC adaptation of Fingersmith in the noughties, though I didn’t actually watch it, so can’t compare this to that. From what I understand though, The Handmaiden is more of a re-imagining and ‘inspired by’ film, than an actual adaptation (though I did just read a synopsis of the book and they seem pretty similar). Anyway, regardless of where the story has come from, I really enjoyed it – it’s probably been my favourite of the films I’ve watched in this challenge so far.

Anyway, here are the bullet-pointed thoughts I had whilst watching it:

  • I quite like the bed in the cupboard
  • This is getting a bit weird
  • What are you doing to her tooth?
  • Nice bra
  • Well, she caught on fast!
  • The men in this are rather unpleasant
  • Ooooooh
  • What the hell? Say ‘penis’ and I’ll put my hand in your face?
  • Jade-gate? Ha ha, new favourite vagina euphemism
  • I could have done without ‘curtains of flesh’ though
  • This might be taking eccentric to a new level
  • Did he just smoke an erotic drawing?
  • This is getting awesome
  • Aghhhhhhhh
  • Stick his penis in there!
  • These men are so gross
  • Oh god, it just reminded me of Belinda Blinked – time for dinner with The Duchess
  • Brilliant film
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2 Responses to 2018 Film Challenge: 4. The Handmaiden

  1. Crashing Elliptical says:

    I’ve never read Fingersmith, nor have I seen the BBC mini-series adaptation from the mid-2000s (although I did watch the Beeb’s adaptation of Tipping the Velvet, by the same author, and enjoyed that from memory). Anyway, I was interested in this enough to pick up the blu-ray boxset, containing both the theatrical cut and the extended cut. However, I’d never actually watched it, until Saturday. I watched the full 168 minute director’s cut, and I absolutely loved it. I thought the unexpected character developments (at least they were unexpected to me!) were outstanding, and despite being almost three hours I thought it flew by. I think I just slightly preferred Blue is the Warmest Colour, but this was a close second (I Heart Huckabees would be third, with Enter the Void bringing up the rear, although I’ve enjoyed all four so far).
    Of course the burning question is, does every film on your list contain a sex scene?! So far Chan’s Movie Sex-o-Meter (c) is 4/4…

    • Chantal Chantal says:

      Ooh, I didn’t realise there was a director’s cut version! Might have to get the blu-ray at some point. And yeah, the sex scene thing was definitely unintentional, but I’d noticed it too! There’s one film coming up that sounds like it’s bordering on porn, so er, yeah, might get an interesting reputation for myself.

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