Far East Film Festival 20

Udine Italy April 20th/ April 28th 2018
The Film Festival For Popular Asian Cinema
Teatro Nuovo Giovanni da Udine
Monday, April 24, time 1.10 PM

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Mrs K

Malaysian filmmaker Ho Yuhang gives Hong Kong genre cinema the Quentin Tarantino treatment with Mrs K, an endearing love letter to the Hong Kong films he grew up with. Infusing elements from a wide range of genres to create a unique hybrid, Mrs K marks an exciting new stage in Ho’s career.

Mrs K (Kara Wai) lives a comfortable life in the suburbs with her gynaecologist husband (Taiwan rocker Wu Bai) and a loving daughter (Siow Li Xuan). Little does she know that her past is coming back to haunt her in the form of a former partner-in-crime (Simon Yam) looking for revenge for a botched heist from long ago. When her daughter is kidnapped, Mrs K is forced to put up her fists and take up a fight to the death to save everything she holds dear.
Like a Hong Kong film, Mrs K kicks off with two sequences that are wildly different in tone: Three men (directors Kirk Wong, Fruit Chan and Dain Iskandar Said) are bumped off in violent ways by a mysterious killer. Before their identities are revealed to us, we meet Mrs K in her squeaky clean kitchen as her home is robbed by two hoodlums. We know that Mrs K will have to unleash an ass kicking at some point, but Ho holds back by ending the scene with a comical tease of what’s to come. It’s a fantastic introduction for the character.   

Ho has proven himself to be an expert of slow-burn tension in At the End of Daybreak. Mrs K follows a similar pacing, gradually revealing the sinister forces that threaten Mrs K’s peaceful existence and using the subsequent chase to build anticipation for a climactic showdown.
Fortunately, Ho delivers the action in a big way in the second half. Unlike the graceful action ballet of Tarantino’s Kill Bill, the action choreography by Adam Chan (Bullets Over Summer, Sparrow) is rough, messy and visceral. We feel every punch, kick and tumble in a startlingly realistic way. In what is likely to be her final action film, Wai exudes a real movie star presence as a conflicted character who is forced to revive a past that she worked desperately hard to bury. If she does keep her promise of leaving the genre behind, Mrs K makes for the perfect swan song for an amazing action career.
Ho’s love for Hong Kong cinema can be felt throughout Mrs K, from the retro pulpy vibe to the inclusion of prominent Hong Kong film figures (in addition to the two directors, martial arts veteran Lau Wing also has a supporting role). Yet, Ho refrains from adapting Tarantino’s exploitative grindhouse aesthetics. Instead, he melds his influences with his own background to craft a unique film that is contemporary and timeless in equal measures. Mrs K proudly wears its influences on its sleeves, but it’s ultimately a Ho Yuhang film.  

Kevin Ma
Film director: 
Ho Yuhang
Year: 
2016
Running time: 
96

Trailer

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p8BBW8St1fo&list=PL5qowzmoQxh6RyMGtk4UkEVNT-pvgd_ED&index=17

Photogallery

  • Mrs K 00
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