“Pleasure Factory (Kuaile Gongchang)”
Sex in the City
Singapore’s Red Light District, Geylang, was once an area where coconuts were processed in the many factories that were there. Now it is an area of brothels where pimps attempt to see the goods. Not a lot of talking is exchanged in Geylang (and in this movie) and we see a lot of extremely beautiful imagery in a very seedy part of town.
“Pleasure Factory” is made up of three stories. The first is the tale of a young man in the army who wants to lose his virginity and decides that the best way to do so with an experienced “lady of the night”. Jonathan (Loo Zihan who also co-directed the film), an army boy seems not quite ready for sex but his friend, Kiat (Katashi Chen) eggs him on and he decides to use the services and charms of a buxom Chinese girl, This is perhaps the most successful of the three stories. We clearly see and understand the emotions involved and the humor is quite good. We learn about desire, love and how one deals with virginity.
The second story is about a prostitute in her 40’s and her daughter and a male client and the focus of this story is the mother-daughter relationship. Finally in the third story we meet a hooker from mainland China who pays for a street singer to come to her house so she can hear a special song.
Shot either is very dim light or with too much neon, the movie is not easy on the eyes and this made the film hard to follow. It has somewhat of a documentary feel to it but was lacking in both metaphor and emotion. I found it also to be a bit shallow and all in all a bit weak.