Eros (2004) is a trilogy of supposedly erotic shorts by three
directors, Wong Car Wai, Stephan Soderberg and Michelangelo
The Hand (Wong Car Wai)
A young tailor, Chang Chen, is summoned to the apartments of a
famous courtesan, Gong Li. She orders him to remove his pants, then
fondles him, telling him that he will never forget her, and will
make beautiful clothes for her. Her approach works, and he is
devoted to her, making all of her gowns. When she begins to run out
of looks, and therefore customers and money, he sticks with her,
even to her sad descent into street prostitution.
There is no nudity at all, every scene is in near darkness, and I
saw little of interest, erotic or not. It is an interesting take on
unrequited love, but not one that I found at all entertaining. I
would keep the fast forward handy for this segment.
Equilibrium (Stephan Soderbergh)
We see a woman (Ele Keats) taking a bath and putting on her
make-up nude. We only see her breasts and her crotch. This turns out
to be someone's dream. Switch to black and white. An ad executive is
in a shrink's office, obsessing over his inability to come up with a
sales campaign for alarm clocks, over a toupee a co-worker is
wearing, and over his dream of the woman. The shrink convinces him
to lie down on the couch and close his eyes, at which the shrink
starts sailing paper airplanes out of the office window.
Nonetheless, the shrink manages to help him. The surprise ending
reveals the identity of the woman in the dream.
While Robert Downey Jr (as the patient) and Alan Arkin (as the
shrink) gave good performances, I didn't see any point to it.
Again, this segment, for me, was a waste of time. I also failed
to see the eroticism here.
The Dangerous Thread of Things
As this film opens, Regina Nemni is lying topless in front of a
villa. A man comes out to speak with her, and it becomes clear that
this is the end of an affair. The two go for a walk and finally
break up while standing on a pier. Cut to the same man outside a
neighboring villa, and Luisa Ranieri inviting him in. She shows him
the roof, and then goes back in, strips to her panties and
masturbates. He then comes back inside and the two have sex. The man
leaves for Paris. We see Luisa Ranieri, completely nude, dancing on
the edge of the surf at length, then lying down on a blanket. Then
we see Regina Nemni do exactly the same thing. As the film ends,
Nemni finds Ranieri, and the two stare at each other.
The imagery is beautiful here, clearly showing a master's touch.
I am sure those who are fond of finding the symbolism within art
will find fertile ground here, with the two women being an alpha and
an omega, the man connecting the two, and then the beginning and the
end meeting. In fact, I should probably suggest this film to my old
English teachers, as they thrive on the discovery of symbolism. I
don't know from symbolism, but I do recognize eye candy, and this
film makes the entire DVD worth the time just for the eye candy
alone. I can't imagine a better visual treat than seeing a
completely nude woman dancing along the surf line in broad daylight,
and this film has two of them. Further, the visuals in the first
half of the film are wonderful. In terms of plot and pace, this is
not much better than the first two, but makes up for it in visual