Three…Extremes (2004)

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Assembling three of the most prominent and respected directors in the genres of horror and thriller. Three…Extremes is a moody, vicious, and down right disgusting compilation. It features shorts directed by Chan-wook Park (Oldboy), Fruit Chan (Durian Durian), and Takashi Miike (Ichi the Killer), each respectively unleashing their most emancipated efforts. While each short is equal in their monstrosity, individually they work on different levels and aspects of trepidation. The segments are entitled “Box” (Miike’s), “Cut” (Park), and “Dumplings” (Chan). Three…Extremes is consistent and even making it a rare spectacle in horror anthologies. When you combine Miike, Chan, and Park, you know what you’re getting yourself into. Sleep tight…

Dumplings: Fruit Chan.

An actress who is disgusted with her aging visits a woman to help her reclaim youth. The woman makes dumplings infused with a special ingredient that helps regenerate bodily properties. When the actress discovers what the special ingredient is, she is forced to make some difficult decisions on the length she is willing to go to retrieve her youthful looks.

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Cut: Chan-wook Park.

A film director returns home from work one evening when strange events start to occur. When an intruder knocks him unconscious, he wakes on one of his sets with his wife being tied to a piano. The captor then begins to play mind games with the couple. As the stakes are raised, the director begins to crumble under the pressure.

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Box: Takashi Miike.

A shy woman continuously has reoccurring nightmares in which she is buried alive in a box. While she is awake, she begins to see her long lost sister appear. During a series of flashbacks, the woman begins to realize the connection between her nightmares and apparitions.

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I’ve always found it a bit odd that no hostage ever seems to understand that their captor is criminally insane. However, being this insane comes with its fair share of hilarity and apparently Mr. Park thinks so as well. The out of place humour in his short “Cut,” is a wonderful comical contrast. “Cut” is by far the most diabolical and ruthless of the shorts, with its twists, brutal truths, and cringing gore. “Dumplings” by Fruit Chan is the one short I’ll issue a warning for. Deliberately crossing the line and never looking back, “Dumplings” is not for the squeamish. Mixing a smart story with unexplainable acts, literally deplorable, “Dumplings” will leave you turning away in repulsion. Finally, Takashi Miike’s “Box” is the more generic and tame of the three I guess you could say. In no way am I taking anything away from this spine chilling tale. I am just stating that in comparison, “Box” isn’t nearly as physically despicable. “Box” is an excellent scare and will put you on the edge of your seat in fear. With each short working off one another, Three…Extremes is a vomit inducing, psychologically scrambling, eye burning thrill.

Three…Extremes: 9 out of 10.

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About Joseph@thecinemamonster

Aspiring writer who absolutely adores film and television. thecinemamonster.com

Posted on March 11, 2013, in Horror and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. “Dumplings” was my favorite one of them all. Strangely enough, even though I like Miike, I don’t remember ANYTHING about his segment in this.

  2. Yeah Miike’s “Box” was the weakest of the three but still fairly unnerving. His full length features are incomparable though.

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