Saturday, September 27, 2008

‘Painted Skin’ opens across Asia

By Mark Pollard • September 26, 2008

Director Gordon Chan’s period thriller PAINTED SKIN arrives in Asian theaters this week. It’s the latest screen adaptation from a collection of supernatural romance stories by Liao Zhai, previously adapted into the Hong Kong classic A CHINESE GHOST STORY, as well as King Hu’s PAINTED SKIN. Contrary to what folks might think with Donnie Yen in armor being prominently displayed in the promotional art, this is not another action-oriented martial arts or wuxia movie

Zhou Xun is a vampire-like woman who eats the skins and hearts of her lovers. She is discovered by a military commander (Chen Kun) and falls in love with him. SHAOLIN SOCCER starlet Zhao Wei is the faithful wife to the commander who discovers the demon’s real identity and intentions and recruits a former general (Donnie Yen) and a “ghostbuster” to get rid of her.

So far, Chan’s film has been met with mixed reviews. Here’s a brief sampling.

“Fans of Donnie Yen will probably be a tad disappointed by his limited screen appearance … PAINTED SKIN held a lot of promise, but didn’t deliver that level of oomph in its final product, lapsing into mediocrity throughout.” - A Nutshell Review

“What audiences would be most impressed with are Zhou [Xun] and Zhao’s impressive performance as the vixen spirit and the devoted wife respectively … Watch out for the scene where the two women confront each other – the determination and relentless of the two characters are inaudibly explosive.” - MovieXclusive


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