Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Help Me Eros|
Actors: Lee Kang-Sheng, Jane Liao, Dennis Nieh, Ivy Yi
Director: Lee Kang-Sheng
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
Ah Jie lost everything in the stock market due to a severe economic crisis. One day, he calls a suicide helpline and gets to know Chyi, whose sweet and gentle voice causes him to fall in love with his fantasized image of h... more »
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Zack Davisson | Seattle, WA, USA | 08/14/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Help Me Eros" ("Bang bang wo ai shen") is a sensual, not a sexual movie. Exquisitely filmed, there is never a scene of naked flesh that is not adorned with a pattern cast shadows, never a cafe scene that is not a perfectly planned and posed, rich in color and design. Director Lee Kang-Sheng knows how to paint a picture with his camera, and he doesn't waste an inch of film without packing it full of visual pleasure.
Story. Oh yes, there is a story. Ah Jie (again the director, Lee Kang-Sheng, who also stars in the film) is a down on his luck business man who has lost everything in the stock market and now is reduced to selling his household goods in order to maintain his lifestyle, which includes lots and lots of pot. Despondent, he calls a suicide hotline and speaks to Chyi, a girl with a beautiful voice who lures him back from the edge, but refuses to meet him. He then meets a Betle Nut girl named Shin, whose provides the visual reference needed for his fantasies of Chyi, and he pursues her. From there things begin to spiral downwards, as Ah Jie becomes lost in a sensual world of fantasy and pleasure, seeking Chyi but dragging Shin into a sensual world where pot is exchanged for sex from a variety of prostitutes, and the internet provides the faceless vehicle for communication.
In a way, this is a pretentious art flick. Imagine an acrobatic threesome carried out to the background music of Buddhist chanting. But somehow the ennui works, mainly through the director's skillful eye and his ability to sell all of these scenes with a straight face. As another nod to the director's talent, for all of its gymnastic sex scenes "Help Me Eros" is a film almost entirely without nudity, as he manages to skirt the censors and create with pure mood what he cannot create with expliciticity. The girls are pretty, and wear next to nothing, but there is definitely a boundry of what you get to see, and the tease makes you want to see it all the more.
Much of this film is pure Taiwan, including the Betle Nut girls who attract customers by wearing skimpy clothing and yet selling nothing more than nuts and an occasional glimpse. There is a dry humor here as well, the kind found in a city lacking nationality and identity, where people seek their pleasures where they may, and live what life they have to live."
Amos Lassen | Little Rock, Arkansas | 06/10/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Help Me Eros (Bang Bang Wo Ai Shen)"
Dreamlike in composition," Help Me Eros" is a look at a man, Ah Jie, who has lost everything in the stock market and now spends his time in his apartment, sealed off from the world, smoking and growing his own marijuana. He is desperate and he calls a suicide hotline and gets to know Chyi. Chyi's sweet and gentle voice causes him to fall in love with what he imagines her to be. She rejects him whenever he asks her out and he starts projecting his fantasy of her onto Shin, a girl who works at the betel nut stall downstairs from his apartment. Shin is alluring and wears revealing clothes in order to lure male customers. Ah Jie becomes close to her and the two eventually sink into a world of psychedelic and erotic pleasures. As this happened, Ah Jie also begins the stalking of Chyi.
Our hero, who has fallen on hard times, is the focus of the film. Not only did he lose everything in the stock market, but his girlfriend has left him. He is constantly stoned and relies on his computer for contact with the outside world and he lures young hookers to his apartment where he gets them stoned and engages in sexual marathons with them.
The movie shows how it is very easy to become only a number in the big city. People become unknown except to themselves. This is the life of Ah Jie. He is lonely and bored. The film has wonderful subdued humor and it certainly provokes thought. One cannot help but feel for the man who tries to rise from despair. You realize the emptiness of life especially when one lives in a world of drugs and sex,
Bangbang wo Aishen
Aaron Mannino | 06/07/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Anyone familiar with the Taiwan New Cinema movement of the past 20 years, or comparatively the films of Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami (TASTE OF CHERRY), or even select works of Michaelangelo Antonioni (L'AVVENTURA), will be better apprised of how to palate Lee Kang-Sheng's sophomore effort, HELP ME EROS (2008), with it's long uninterrupted shots (30sec-5min), navigation of peculiar but banal human experience, dire scarcity of dialogue, metered accumulation-based narrative arches, and social commentary mostly devoid of irony (reminiscent of Italian Neorealism). The addition of EROS's more abhorrent sexual leanings seats it on the mantle of recent permutations of the Taiwan filmic movement (THE WAYWARD CLOUD, I DONT WANT TO SLEEP ALONE) that delve into the marginalized mire of modernity, and makes it very much of the modern generational context, a new floating socio-political context that garners old wounds. Those new to such labored undistracted tenets of filmmaking may be affronted by the patience required, but their design is such that each moment is held extensively and deliberately so that every detail within it can become accessible to the viewer, burgeoning an experiential and dimensional understanding almost by force.
HELP ME EROS is an ambitious and unrelentingly beautiful film, that is also unfortunately at odds with itself, suspended somewhere between prose and grit but uncomfortable in such tonal ambiguity. EROS unfolds in a world of too little or too much gravity; a stagnant orbit of emotionally starved semi-dimensional characters, fluorescent light, sexual escapism, and commerce, suffering incongruity alongside boldness and brilliance. While writer/director Lee Kang-Sheng mostly overstates his existential meanings with non-diegetic songs that spell out woes like a bludgeon, and falls short in terms of blending his content and aesthetics as a whole, he does succeed marvelously within visual moments, of which there is no shortage. It is these moments of perfectly framed peculiarity, poignancy, comedy, and loneliness in collage, rather than blending, that buoy HELP ME EROS to success. Lee Kang-Sheng's visual language is his strongest asset, with notable thanks to Tsai Ming-Liang as production designer, and helps to enhance if not mask what is otherwise a rather conventional narrative arch."
Rawr and wow
C. Yenkenes | miami, fl | 09/13/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"visual magic! it may drag to some, and you might not understand it right away, but when you do... wow!!"