COMING to local theatres this 7th September is Mrs K, helmed by Petaling Jaya’s very own Ho Yuhang. The movie has since travelled the world since it’s premiere last October at the Busan International Film Festival. Last week, The Daily Seni was given the chance to see for ourselves this critically acclaimed film. To be perfectly candid, our initial expectations of the film weren’t very positive. The movie however, proved us wrong. Although it has its flaws, Mrs K is a definite must see, and here’s why we think so.
1. It’s a beautiful film
One of the most striking aspects of Mrs K is that it is an extremely aesthetically pleasing movie. Directed by Ho Yuhang, this Malaysia-Hong Kong co-production movie will wow you with its crisp and coordinated cinematography. All throughout the movie, you will experience the nation’s rural and urban landscapes through the eyes of the award-winning director.
When asked about his location choices for each scene, he said,”There’s always an urban setting where the story begins, and then things would invariably shift toward rural and people-less landscapes. The non-geometrical backdrops seem like perfect battlegrounds for the characters when things turn severe. It’s a more painterly choice, not a narratively logical one.”
There are some particular scenes in the movie that, in terms of visuals, will leave you speechless. Ho Yuhang does a splendid job at using colour and light in his latest film. We’re talking about THE car-wash scene here. You’ll have to go and watch Mrs K to see what we’re talking about. Holy shitballs it was beautiful.
2. Is diverse in more aspects than one
The film undeniably brings forth a diverse cast, not just in terms of race but also in terms of each member’s area of expertise. Mrs K is portrayed by Kara Wai, Shaw Brothers Studios’ kung-fu queen of the 70s and 80s who has won numerous awards and starred in countless movies ever since. Actors such as rockstar extraordinaire, Wu Bai, 80s teen heartthrob and all-in-all industry old-timer, Faizal Hussein, actor-director, Simon Yam who has starred in 200 films since the start of his career, Dain Iskandar Said, Malaysian writer and filmmaker responsible for Interchange, Hong Kong screenwriter Fruit Chan and a ton of others.
Mrs K is part Malaysian and it definitely feels like it. Mandarin, Cantonese, English, Malay and Tamil are spoken throughout the movie and gives off a very local vibe that’s close to home. Malaysian culture is subtly weaved into Mrs K and can be noticed throughout the movie, but it was not done in a ‘Malaysia Truly Asia‘ way. The movie does this, while resembling Western and Oriental films in some facets. A surprising but mildly successful pairing.
3. Gore galore
Mrs K does not hold back in featuring gory aspects at all. The movie’s usage of blood, bruises, calluses and cuts were brave but sufficient. Fight scenes were intense, creative and slightly addictive. Action movies have a tendency to make its fight scenes reach a point of redundancy but Mrs K featured an alright amount of fighting. Just enough to get you at the edge of your seat but not too much to the point of making you projectile vomit. It has a little bit of everything, making it watchable for lovers of all genres, of all ages.
4. Mrs K is not your everyday auntie
Women are born survivors.
Mrs K says this to herself after discovering that her whole life is in shambles and it’s up to her to save her family. She is a certified badass because she is a middle-aged housewife who single-handedly beats up MULTIPLE bad guys on HER OWN to save her husband and daughter. In this Taken-esque genre film, Kara Wai’s character has to save her family from the ghosts of her past who come back haunting her’s in search of lost treasure.
Mrs K is making curry buns one minute and then showing amateur robbers how it’s done. She was grocery shopping one second and chasing down a lorry in the middle of standstill traffic the other. When will you ever?! Mrs K’s character spends most of the movie suffering, both emotionally and physically. When asked about embodying such a damaged character, Kara Wai told us, “The script was very clear in spelling out the emotional details. I knew what I was getting into. I knew what I could suggest to add even during the shoot. Outside of the scene I wasn’t suffering. Emotionally it’s there and I knew the weight of it but it didn’t wear me out. But of course the shooting process wasn’t short and it always came down to physical endurance. I needed enough sleep so we tried to have as less overtime as we possibly could. And having a strict diet also helped!”.
This is the end of our list of reasons why you should watch Mrs K. Jangan lupa tengok, K?