Isabella (Pang, 2006)

February 18, 2009

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This frustratingly constrained yet, stylish Hong-Kong drama about a corrupt cop and his estranged daughter leaves much to be desired. The main problem stems from the bland characters and the lack of immediacy concerning their relationship. Incest seems to be a hot topic for filmmakers these days but unfortunately, Pang does not delivering  anything insightful on the taboo subject matter. The threadbare plot becomes utterly irrelevent in contrast to the visual aspects and elegiac mood of irreparable loss, emphasized by the haunting score which serves as the only redeeming factor of the entire film. Not even the gorgeous and talented Isaballa Leong could save this interminable mess.  Peter Kam’s beautiful and somber score with its use of soft-piano keys evokes a sense of melancholy although it quickly loses its effectiveness when placed alongside the over-saturated melodrama floundering in its own banality.

3/10

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