Lust,Caution – Part 4

Eileen Chang

Lust, Caution was partly filmed in Penang in 2006, using the 4 buildings of Yeap Chor Ee in China Street Ghaut as the backdrop, as told to me by the Chief Minister.

Ang Lee was the director. Do watch the extra feature which has his commentary on the movie and observations in English by Tony Leung, Tang Wei and the script writer.

The ability of a script writer and director to flesh out a good but sparse novel always amazes me.

Excellent examples are the movies Lust, Caution, The English Patient and The Remains of the Day titled after exquisitely crafted novels of the same names.

The White Countess which is a 2005 movie based on a specially commissioned script from Kazuo Ishiguro somehow fails to hit the heights.

The stars are excellent with Ralph Fiennes, Natasha Richardson and Vanessa and Lynn Redgrave.

The setting 1930s Shanghai is exotic with all the horror of the Japanese invaders.

The club, Japanese armed forces patrons with a white Russian Countess who has fallen into destitute working as a Madam, evoke echoes of the WW2 movie Casablanca with its ominous Nazi overtones as well as The English Patient set in Cairo WW2.

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