'These are rough times,' a woman is told before being raped and killed for her money and jewellery. The woman then returns as a ghost to exact revenge. Sex Beyond The Grave (1984) could have been a creepy and thrilling movie but it is merely rendered comical. Still the curvaceous female ghost is something to wow about. Stephen Tan reviews.


It's World War II and singer Kwong Mei Bo is on the run with her husband and son. Seeking refuge at the Tao mansion, they are betrayed by old master Tao. Kwong is raped by the Japanese commander and her family killed. Seeing a shocked Kwong, old master Tao takes advantage of the situation and rapes Kwong before killing her for her money and jewels. The old man says "Don't be too sad. These are rough times... That Japanese is ruthless..." before penetrating her from behind." When he's finished with her, he adds: "Being a woman is not easy..." Needless to say, with her dying breath, Kwong vows vengeance on the old man.

Flash forward to the present. Goo Goon Chung is a descendant of the Tao family and is a diehard gambler. To settle his debts, he sells the dilapidated Tao mansion to Liu Yung and his family (wife Chin Wai Yee and son Leung Jun Git). Strange things start to happen after Liu moves into the mansion - family and friends levitate in the air, Chin is attacked by the fridge, and son gets sucked into another dimension via an old well. Thanks to the help of an exorcist, the family is reunited but not before Goo takes off with Kwong's jewel case.

Kwong Mei Bo (left) gets her clothes torn off by Japanese commandant (played by Ko Fei).

Before he can clear his debts, Goo runs into Kwong and the two end up having sex. During their lovemaking, Goo accidentally looks into the mirror and realises he is having sex with a ghost.

The title, Sex Beyond The Grave (1984), is enticing enough and the opening rape scene - though nothing is revealed - helps sets the mood. Then right smack in the middle of the movie, Goo the gambler has a windfall and is introduced to a Las Vegas showgirl who does a strip dance for him. Like Hex with its nude dance tagged at the end, the nude dance here only adds to the sexism of the movie. The more erotic moment is the steamy sex between Goo and Kwong, but it is soon marred by the attempt to make it silly and comedic (after Goo discovers he is dealing with a ghost... or is that seeding a ghost?).

Goo Goon Chung... up close and direct.

And that seems to be the problem with the movie - it doesn't know whether to be serious or a comedy; an adult movie or family fare; melodramatic or sexy or just plain exploitative. That two directors - Chiu Chun-keung and Li Tai-heng - worked on this might suggest there were some production problems involved (after all, this is no cast-of-a-thousand Water Margin epic) and the resulting movie is somewhat patchy. The whole bit about Goo meeting a blind fortune-teller and his acquiring a spirit tablet (housing a female spirit) seems like a retelling of Kuei Chih-hung's Hex Vs Witchcraft (1980) but the storyline here is never concluded satisfactorily.

While Liu Yung adds star power to the movie, his bumbling scientist's family under (demonic) siege, though mainly played for laughs, is Poltergeist all over again and it is actually Kwong Mei Bo who delivers the acting chops - from rape victim to vengeful ghost. But then, given the film's messy narrative, it is finally Kwong's body that holds your interest.

Note: Sex Beyond The Grave (IVL/Celestial) is only available on VCD and is banned in $ingapore.

For more... email singbigo@singnet.com.sg with the message, "Put me on your mailing list."

November 21, 2006

  Click here for other Asian Values DVD Reviews:

The Sexy Killer
The Girlie Bar
At The Breast Of The Enemy
Starlets For Sale
In The Navel Of The Sea
The Amorous Lotus Pan
Big Bad Sis
The Sugar Daddies
Bruce Lee & I
Yesterday Children
The Boxer's Omen
Tinimbang Judged Today
The Foxy Ladies
Corpse Mania
Pale Passion
Sinful Adulteress
Raw Passions
Pila Balde
Sinful Confession
Flower Of Manila
Sexy Playgirls
The Most Beautiful Creature On The Face Of The Earth
Sexy Career Girls
Toro (Live Show)
That's Adultery
Woman Of Mud
Adultery, Chinese Style
Women Of Desire
Naked Under The Moon
Love Swindler
Virgin People
The Girl With The Long Hair
Sex For Sale
36 Secrets Of Courtship
Biyaheng Langit
Sexy Girls Of Denmark
Golden Lotus: Love And Desire
Tuhog (Larger Than Life)
Dreams Of Eroticism
Legends Of Lust
Amorous Woman Of Tang Dynasty
Hong Kong Hong Kong
Kiss Of Death
Crazy Sex
Forbidden Tales Of Two Cities
The Call Girls