Dec 17, 2008

Her Vengeance

I thought I had seen it all, that is until I peeped this CAT III (or II, depending on the release) Chinese rape-revenge exploitation piece with gratuitous violence and wheelchair kung-fu. It all starts with Pauline Wong working in a night club. This fateful night sees her shoo away a gang of drunken hooligans who regroup outside and assault her leading to a scenario of gang rape and the shocking aftermath. Truth be told, It's quite evident that this is a piece of trash art from the director of Riki-Oh: The Story of Ricky.

Upon inspection from a doctor, he humorously starts screaming that she has AIDS and that her vagina's going to start spewing green funk. Putting it lightly seems out of the question. Upon the degradation that she suffered, a beam of hope flutters to the spotlight. She seeks what any female exploitation star desires - a painful revenge. Along the way, she expresses absolutely no strength resulting in a pathetic message of anti-violence but the film finds support weight from the crippled co-star that plays her father. The wheelchair bound, ex-Triad, and full-time dad (Ching-Ying Lam , friend of the legendary Sammo Hung) who resembles an Asiatic Neil Patrick Harris steals all the attention turning this trash piece into a glamorous CAT III ordeal.

Decency is a rare find in exploitation. Most films spill guts hollowly with out fearing repercussion. Seen in I Spit On Your Grave, Keaton slays all of her rapists with very little consequence other than the prior elongated rape. In this film, our beloved infected Pauline stumbles around the city plotting her revenge. In what could have been a feminist CAT III classic by definition, we're given a film tainted with the very idea that females are the weaker gender. She eventually relies on her dad's enthusiastic Home Alone approach to his bar. The result is a blood bath that will forever be memorable over such trap infested sinema as Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Two existing versions of the film have been released. Depending on which label you purchased (or downloaded) yours from, you will either get the longer CAT II release which features not-as-graphic depictions of violence or you could get the shorter CAT III film with more inserted brutality for all your gorehound needs. Her Vengeance is a special kind of film though, one that doesn't depend on the violence, rather the crippled antics and black humor to propel it into safe territory.

Her Vengeance is a rare breed of trashy Chinese aesthetics. It brings light to a possible madcap sophistication within its doomed genre. Blood. Sex. Mayhem. Repeat. This is the doctrine from which many exploitation film makers pry their designs from. Her Vengeance is something to cherish. Easily one of the top 10 CAT III films I've seen. I couldn't recommend this enough, even if for just the wheelchair antics.


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