By Natalie Tsui
We watched Ian Gamazon’s after watching the bone-crunching, Vietnamese action film CLASH. Even after seeing 100 minutes of ass-whupping via flying scissor kick, I was still blown away by the intense mental and physical (unseen) violence in LIVING IN SEDUCED CIRCUMSTANCES.
Gamazon inverts expectations in this torture thriller by placing a pregnant woman (Minh) as the aggressor. The victim of her sadistic games is a older man (Mr. Thanh) bound to a wheelchair via duct tape. Divided into chapters and drifting into animated abstractions, the film plays with the playful nature of Minh and the horror of her violence toward Mr. Thanh and create a surreal, childlike fantasy in which Minh is ruler and Mr. Thanh her court jester. Quynn Ton’s performance of Minh is deeply unsettling in her mixture of innocence with a boundless capacity for cruelty; Long Nguyen’s incapacitated Mr. Thanh is delivered with complete rawness and sincerity. It is impossible not to pity the fool.
Even after two days, my brain is still digesting the rich content of this film. If you have a chance to watch this genius experiment in narrative, DO IT. You will not be disappointed.
Gamazon was in attendance after the film as well as at the CLASH after party, during which he revealed that he shot the film in five days with just the two actors, once again proving how a truly inventive, compelling film can be created with almost no budget (and also making forever scared of angry pregnant women). Mr. Gamazon, you are a men of men. Slow clap, fine sir. Slow clap.
Natalie is a participant in this year’s Verizon Student Delegate Program