ASIAN VALUES DVD REVIEW
Woman Of The Night (1973) is one of those filler movies that are
akin to scrapping the bottom of the barrel. The star name here
is Tanny Tien Ni (Black Magic) but she's not exactly among Shaw's
top erotic actresses. The supporting leads in this movie are -
get ready for a collective yawn - Chin Han (Ivy Ling Po's hubby)
and Peng Peng, the actor who played Pigsy in those Journey To
The West movies.
if this is a three-hander - Li Han-hsiang still manages to eke
out some interesting movies using the anthology format - with
the first story bearing the title of the film.
Han and Margaret Hsing Hui are a happily married couple until
he gets shot in the crotch at a family picnic. As a result, he
becomes impotent but takes out his anger at his wife and daughter,
to the extent of driving them out of the home. Hsing becomes a
social escort to earn her living while her daughter has to suffer
the taunts of her classmates because of what her mother does.
Finding life unbearable, the daughter decides to return to Chin
Han but is abducted by Chin's colleague who not only harbours
a grudge but has an eye on both mother and daughter. The abduction
is witnessed by Hsing and, while trying to rescue her daughter,
stabs the man to death. A tearful family reunion takes place as
Hsing is escorted to jail.
Han (left) and Margaret Hsing Hui.
wandered into the cinema by the seemingly erotic title of Woman
Of The Night must have thought they were watching the wrong movie.
The opening story is a simple family drama where the attractive-looking
wife is both reasonable and supportive. It is the husband who
has the hang-up and things could have easily worked out had he
talked about his problem with his wife. Unfortunately, they needed
something to stretch into a film (or at least one-third of a film).
moment is when Chin Han is shot in the crotch. No doubt it's a
hunting accident but that's really stretching credibility when
the hunter was shooting birds (and not some birdie in the bush)!
Expectations run a little high in the scene where the wife takes
off her clothes for some sex which the husband refuses! With hardly
any sex, nudity or hanky panky, impatient viewers would have walked
out by now.
segment fares a little better. The Secretary And The Wolf is about
womanising Peng Peng who has good-looking girls working in his
office and who is not above looking down their blouses or up their
skirts. While trying to seduce secretary Tien Ni at a hotel, Peng
Peng is not aware that Tien Ni has already informed the Mrs of
what the man is up to. What's next is a comical (let's be generous
and leave it at that) cat-and-mouse game between Peng Peng and
his wife (who comes looking with a big stick). While there is
no sex in this segment, there is some nudity as when Peng Peng
barges into different hotel rooms and finding women in various
forms of undress, and one (who is topless) even gamely throws
fruits at Peng Peng to get him to leave the room. The most hilarious
line in the segment is when Tien Ni says, "If I didn't wear so
many panties last night, it would be a disaster."
story, The Peeping Tom, has the best potential but is let down
by silly melodramatics and weak casting. Teenager Mingde (who
looks more like a young adult) is supposed to be at that age where
his hormones are raging full-on and has a stack of porn magazines
to keep things at bay. Not helping matters is that the other tenants
in the apartment are saucy-looking women. As the story goes, Mingde
peeps at his neighbour while she is taking her bath and creeps
into another woman's bedroom at night to fondle her body. Not
surprisingly, Mingde gets caught both times, much to his sister's
shame. Big sis then concocts a plan that might or might not work.
One night, Mingde enters one of the rooms and fondles the sleeping
woman, waking her up in the process. Instead of shouting for help,
she offers her body to Mingde (she says it was his sister's idea).
Mingde is so filled with shame that he decides that from now on,
he should keep his eyes and his hands to himself.
the premise of each story is promising - impotent men with big
hang-ups, skirt chasing bosses and a peeping tom. While the movie
is nothing to shout about, it's the sermonising that really is
unbearable. In other words, preachy like anything with nothing
much to show for it.
Woman Of The Night (IVL/Celestial) is only available on VCD and
is banned in $ingapore.