Monday, July 25, 2011

3D Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy [ Movie Review ] ★★

After the election is over, Golden Village Pictures finally released the dates for 3D Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy. Singaporean, mark your calender down. On 21st July 2011, we can finally unleash our desires for the big screen version of this highly anticipated 3D soft porn film that features the likes of Japanese Adult Video stars like Saori Hara (who had suddenly retired from showbiz after the recent tsunami) and sexy Hong Kong actress Vonnie Liu.

According to Channelnewsasia, we will be getting the International version with no cuts and obviously this 3D soft porn will be getting the R21 rating. International version will be 102 mins long while the version shown in Hong Kong was 129 mins long. There will also be another longer version of this movie that will be released on the Director cut DVD eventually.

The Pitch

Sex sells and Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy sold like hotcakes in Hong Kong when it was first released. There were even reports of tour groups for the poor China folks (who won't be getting this movie in the mainland) to watch this movie in Hong Kong. Elsewhere, major media like Reuters are featuring news on Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy as the world's first IMAX-3D erotic film (not Asian first 3D erotic film, that honors would go to the Korean's movie Natalie) and Hoyts cinema in New Zealand and Australia were showing it in full IMAX glory (but not in Singapore IMAX tsk tsk tsk).

But of course the perks of getting this movie way later than Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand would be that we would be more informed about the movie through reviews and the words had not be kind. Ranging from your average movie goers who posted one liner in forums to this extremely crude and funny Hong Kong review (read by Chapman To)(with English translation), it's pretty easy to get the general feel of the folks who had watched this movie. Bottom line, it's bad.

It's so bad that people are going all out to tell one another to avoid watching this soft porn flick. But called it good advertising or curiosity, I for one would like to see bad this movie can get and why it caused CNNGO's Zoe Li to decide on never to have sex again because its (Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy) message of "true love doesn't need sex" was so convincing.

Yes, sometimes we head into bad movies so that we could see the wreckage with our own eyes. Or perhaps I am just simply sadomasochist. anyway let's head on to ...

The Plot

Wei Yangshen (Hiro Hayama) was a scholar who believed in pursuing the ultimate pleasures in life and had no inclination to settle down so soon. Things changed when he accompanied a friend to a matchmaking session. After meeting his friend's potential bride Tie Yuxiang (Leni Lan), the daughter of a well-off family, he quickly changed his tune as both of them fell in love at first sight. They got married quickly but their bedroom activities weren't that enjoyable as Wei Yangshen couldn't control his ejaculation and later on, we discovered that he wasn't really well-endowed down below.

To make matter worse, Wei Yangshen started to "investigate" Prince Ning (Tony Ho)'s crime by visiting the Tower of the Rarities. He became bewitched by the ladies in Prince Ning's Pavilion of Ultimate Bliss, especially Prince Ning's prized girls Reizhu (Saori Hara) and Dongmei (Yukiko Suo). Reizhu helped Wei Yangshen to overcome his premature ejaculation problem and finally our hero could finally enjoy sex.

Wei Yangshen became obsessed with having sex in Prince Ning's pleasure dorm that he neglected his wife. It became so bad that the Tie family force Wei Yangshen to agree to a divorce. After the divorce, Wei Yangshen returned back to Prince Ning's lair and helped him to discover another treasure in his vast collection. As a reward, Prince Ning allowed him to have sex with Dongmei but his micro-penis couldn't satisfied Dongmei and that gave him an inferior complex.

Meanwhile in the Tie's household, Yuxiang started to have sexual urges and lust after a coolie. 

To overcome his micro penis problem, Wei Yangshen seeked Elder Bliss (Vonnie Lui) help and he underwent an unorthodox penis transplant. With his newly acquired penis, Wei Yangshen is now able to satisfy many women.  What he didn't know was that this is all part of Prince Ning's evil plan.

The Perspective

Sex and Zen Extreme Ecstasy turned out to be as bad as what the detractors are saying. Personally, it wasn't the violent and gore that turned me off. It's a weird norm that most of Hong Kong erotic Category III infuse gory stuff into their sex scenes so it came as no surprise. I am not really a fan of Leni Lan and Vonnie Lui so there were no expectation on them to give an arousing performance. Saori Hara and Yukiko Suo are two Japan Adult Video actress who had done plenty of hardcore porn so there very little anticipation for them to top their arousing act in a softporn flick.

Putting those letdowns aside, my personal displeasure with Sex and Zen Extreme Ecstasy would have to be the plotting and characterization.

Before you question the sanity of reviewing a Hong Kong Category III (3) soft porn flick, I am comparing Sex and Zen Extreme Ecstasy with Amy Yip's Sex and Zen 玉蒲團之偷情寶鑑 (which was equally notorious back in the nineties ) and the recent The Forbidden Legend: Sex and Chopsticks 金瓶梅 (Jin Ping Mei). All three titles had similar structure but the execution differs greatly.

Basically, Sex and Zen Extreme Ecstasy is some sort of reboot of Amy Yip's Sex and Zen. The story flows better in Sex and Zen and they don't do U-turn on characterization. In Sex and Zen Extreme Ecstasy, it's like a marathon of sexual episodes with little effort on their linkage. They also tried to do too much with one movie. Sex and Chopsticks was at least wise enough to split the movie into two so that the changes that happens to the protagonist(s) could happen slowly. Here we get a crammed session of changes to the main characters that would make you roll your eyes. Personally it's hard to imagine why would anyone be affected by the morale of the story because the execution was really bad.

If there's anything that Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy had done well, it would be to utilize the "freshness" of recent 3D Fads. It's a great marketing success but I believe it's going to be hard to repeat this kind of success again. Folks might be attracted to the gimmicky pitch that shroud this film production at first but after an unsatisfying time, they might not come back for seconds. But then again, curiosity might just do the trick for them.

3D Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy [ Trailer ]

Safe For Work Trailers

Singapore trailer

China trailer - provides more unseen footage from the previous trailer and showcase more of the potential 3D effects with various projectile

Another Trailer ... that comes with mosaic to cover up the notti bits. But from this trailer, you can get a rough idea what to expect from the Movie

3D Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy [ Video ]

Press Conference with the Actress (Vonnie Lui, Saori Hara & Yukiko Suo)

A Look at Behind the Scenes cum Making Off

Just wondering if anyone need translation? I can try and write out the gist of what they are saying. Just let me know by posting a comment on this post. Cheers RLJ

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