THE HANDMAIDEN

Cert 18 156mins Stars 5

Scheming ambition leads to lust, lunacy and betrayal in this sumptuous erotic thriller.

It’s inspired from the novel Fingersmith, by Sarah Waters, and her Victorian era story makes a remarkably deft transition to Japanese occupied Korea of the early twentieth century.

The Welsh writer also wrote the book which inspired the BBC’s naughty romp, Tipping The Velvet. This is far more explicit.

A pair of con artists conspire to defraud a wealthy Japanese woman. Fujiwara pretends to be an aristocrat to woo the Lady Hideko, while his partner Sook-hee is placed in her household, assuming the position of her handmaiden.

Beginning with Sook-hee, the story unfolds in three parts, presenting the point of view of the leading players in turn.

Writhing with sapphic desire, this exquisitely told tale is ripe with erotic literature, punishment, and torture.

The gorgeous performers embrace their parts while the succulent cinematography makes a fetish of consumption. Indulge yourself.

 

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