I went to see "Lust, Caution" (link contains spoilers) with friend today. I didn't really want to go at first since I already gleaned the major points of the plot from the trailer and I don't like to see movies where I can guess the ending but this is suppose to be Ang Lee's big piece this year and of course there was all this indignation of really naked sex scenes in there so we went to check it out. ( btw, what is with Ang Lee and really naked sex scenes? is he going through some artsy phase? He was actually dismayed by all the fuss over the sex scenes but really if you don't want people to fuss over it, then don't make a NC-17 movie!)
Anyway, some thoughts about this movie without giving away the plot. It is really quite an masterpiece. Ang Lee managed to capture the subtlety in every expression, every movement, every unsaid pause. It is all filmed with a distinct Chinese sensibility. When I was watching it, I did not have a feeling of an "made for foreigner" movie (take notice, crappy Chinese directors with too much money). The actors were absolutely wonderful. The only bad points I can think of is that some of the HK actors (including the main guy) doesn't speak Mandarin that well, so some of the subtlety of intonation is lost during the mandarin dialog and it was a little jarring. But other than that, everything was exquisite.
Now onto the sex scenes, despite the big deal people made of it, there wasn't actually alot of it considering it was a 3 hour movie. It definitely was deserving of the "NC-17" rating though. I saw way more than I wanted to see. Both character was completely naked, although the guy's front side was always in shadows, the backside was very apparent. In other words, it was completely bare and under the light for everyone to see, and there were at least like 5 different positions with big close ups. I have heard some people call it a realistic portrayl because of the fact that there was no cover up, no half hidden views that might have beautified what was basically a very animalistic act. But I have to disagree, yes, it was very raw but it was hardly realistic because it was infused with the desperation, the anxiety and the fear of both characters until the whole act becomes one giant explosion of pain and suffering that the two people tries desperately to be numb to. The only thought i had when I was watching it was it was alot of emotional pain, almost unbearable. So I feel like it wasn't very realistic ( at least for normal people I hope), more like an magnification to the breaking point.
All in all, it was a good movie, I don't think I can bear to watch it again though because I tend to empathize with the main characters in movies and this is just too much pain to go through.
I want to talk about the plot too later, is anybody waiting to see it and dont' want to be spoiled?