Yu Nu, aka Iron Sister
Iron Sister is a Taiwanese movie (Original title: Yu
Nu) which is marketed in
Hong Kong on DVD as a category III (18+) erotic movie, with the
advertising accentuating the nude scene from
beautiful lead actress Shu Qi. Such slippery marketing doesn't do
justice to this feature. It is not an erotic film at all. It is in
fact a legitimate drama set in Manchuria during the Japanese
occupation from the 1930's till 1945. The solid drama happens to
have some moderate levels of sex and nudity, but not even a
peek at pubic hair. The equivalent of an American R rating would be
It begins as Tung, a Chinese man enlisted in the
Japanese Imperial Army, is at it with his girlfriend, played by
Yeung Yi-ting, in the tent of a Japanese major. The major walks in
on them and he isn't pleased at all. A fight ensues in which Tung
kills the major in self-defense. Tung must flee to the countryside
and finds refuge in a remote little farm run by Ironic (Shu Qi) and
her father. Ironic is very much in love with her fiancÚ and soulmate
and they are about to be married. During a nightly raid against the
Japanese her father is killed and the cunning Tung uses the general
bedlam as a cover to kill her fiancÚ.
- Shi Qi shows breasts and buns, there is
possibly a far off full frontal glimpse, while she frolicks in
the river with her fiancÚ
- Yeung Yi-Ting shows her breasts in two
scenes making love to her boyfriend Tung.
Ironic finds herself pregnant by her dead fiancÚ,
and her dad can't run the farm anymore because of his injuries, so
she has no other solution than to enter a loveless marriage with
Tung. Of course she doesn't know what he has done to her fiancÚ.
When Tung later discovers his former girlfriend working in a
whorehouse to support herself, things really take an ugly turn for
Ironic, her father, and her little daughter Tigress.
DVD INFO from
It is an all regions NTSC
disk. The audio is in DD 5.1 Cantonese and Mandarin with Chinese
and English subtitles. The picture quality however suffers in
some parts from scratches and dust which is very surprising for
a 1999 film. It is available from for just HK$30, so you
can't really complain.
For me this movie turned out to be a pleasant
surprise. There is a clear but simple storyline without plot holes
and the ingenious script takes some small details early in the movie
and builds them into important details later on. Furthermore the
characters are well developed and the actors put in a decent
performance. Also, as opposed to many recent high budget films like
Troy, there is no lack of humanity in this movie and you find
yourself caring for what happens to Ironic, her father and Tigress.
Of course it is no masterpiece either, think more of it like an
unpolished gem that rates C in our rating system. If the storyline
had been more elaborate and the camerawork above average, then I
might have rated this as C+.
Critics Vote ...
- IMDB summary.
The IMDb score of 4.8 is meaningless because comprises
|The meaning of the IMDb
score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of
excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars
from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm
watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars
from the critics. The fives are generally not
worthwhile unless they are really your kind of
material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics,
or a C- from our system.
Films rated below five are generally awful even if you
like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one
and a half stars from the critics or a D on our scale. (Possibly even less,
depending on just how far below five the rating
A means the movie is so good it
will appeal to you even if you hate the genre.
B means the movie is not
good enough to win you over if you hate the
genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an
open mind about this type of film.
C means it will only
appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover
appeal. (C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but
will be considered excellent by genre fans, while
C- indicates that it we found it to
be a poor movie although genre addicts find it watchable).
D means you'll hate it even if you
like the genre.
means that you'll hate it even if
you love the genre.
means that the film is not only
unappealing across-the-board, but technically
inept as well. Any film rated C- or better is recommended for
fans of that type of film. Any film rated B- or better is
recommended for just about anyone. We don't score films below C-
that often, because we like movies and we think that most of
them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know
that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below
Based on this description,
this is a C. Solid
drama with some beautiful nudity as a bonus.
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