Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Whoa, Watch It!

I feel like I’m on the verge of catching diabetes – that’s it, if saccharin-sweet movies can make your blood sugar higher. Ladies, if you gets weak on the knees from cheesiness, or if you like your ladies impossibly cute, or if you’re just in the mood of feeling good, then you must watch this.

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“Yes or No” is a Thailand movie. I’ve heard about it several times but I hadn’t had it in my mind to check it out mainly because I avoid the downloading. To you who don’t understand, I live where download rate of 30 KB/s is considered fast. Several days ago I read another recommendation for this movie, surprisingly almost the same time as when one of my facebook friends mentioned this movie in ‘Yucks! Lesbians!” fashion. I took that as a sign and watched this movie.

What I knew from those recommendations I read was that this is a good movie and is a light-hearted romance. I knew that the actresses were good looking at the very least, but my prejudiced side smirked at the stereotypical butch-femme pairing. Another part of me was suspicious, because this is an Asian movie after all, and we tend to have more drama. The last lesbian-themed Asian movie I watched was a Korean TV-movie called “Daughters of Billitis”. It was a movie well-done, but still had too much drama for my taste. Oh wait, there were also the classic Peony Pavilion starred Joey Wang (a really eye-candy movie…the cinematography is just so beautiful but I can’t remember the storyline that well) and the newly-released Sanubari Jakarta (good movie, but again, not one I would watch more than once) that I watched recently. So, yeah, I didn’t watch it until now mainly because of my prejudice. Guilty as charged.

Actually there are lots of drama in this movie, as well, but they’re not treated too darkly. There are more sadness than anger, and there are more forgiveness than jealousy. What I love about this movie is that it manages to stay true to its commitment to make the viewers feel good from beginning to end without giving up the storyline (some people might disagree on this, cause it’s like the writer is trying to make something happen but doesn’t follow through with it. I like it this way, though).

Talking about the storyline, this is a story about a college girl named Pie who asked to be moved to a new room because her roommate was a lesbian. Little did she know, she got a butch (or a tom, as they said it) as her new roommate instead. She hated Kim at the beginning, but slowly she warmed up to her. Kim did look like a boy, but I like it that she defied lots of butch definition. She was afraid of cockroaches and darkness, she liked cooking, and she even cleaned the room for Pie. She was also kind and caring, that she would be the ideal wife for many men if it wasn’t for the way she dress up.Of course she also fits lots of butch stereotypes, like playing games, farming (her major field of study), and playing ukulele/guitar, but I applaud the three-dimensional view of her character. Pie’s character could also be the stereotypical annoying princess in a lesser-skilled writers, but despite her high-maintenance trait, she’s also smart, loyal, and strong, which provided the bravery needed to pursue a relationship with Kim, I guess.

All of the other characters were treated with care, as well. There were Pie’s mom, who was highly conventional, although we never knew if she would someday change her view or not. But at least we never saw ugliness from her except for some harsh words. In the university we met Boy, who was a flamboyant guy, Jane, Pie’s ex-roommate who fell for Kim, and Jane’s new roommate who was silent most of the time. We also met Kim’s aunt who had a restaurant nearby and acted as the voice of reason, and Kim’s father who was the ideal father for any gay woman. Oh, and there was Waen, Pie’s admirer. Like Pie’s mom, he’s the bad guy here, but he did nothing that deserved my hatred.

I can’t judge the acting, cause it’s a movie from a different culture that I’m used too. Even the intonation of the speeches are not familiar for my ears. But as far as I can tell, the chemistry is definitely there and the attraction feels real. The soundtracks were great and served their purpose well. The cinematography was not excellent, but there were many beautiful scenes captured well throughout the movie. Overall, it’s worth trying at least once, just to see if you would like it.

I might be a bit biased in liking this movie because of its content. First of all, it’s about first love in a dormitory setting, something that had been taken to scenes before but usually ended in tragedy. It’s nice to see that for once, the teacher actually played part in getting them together instead of trying to separate them. Second of all, I can relate much about people judging Kim just by her appearance. In my life I’ve learned that how people treat me on street depends heavily on how long my hair is. With strangers, I’ll just turn a blind eye (and a deaf ear), but dealing with someone so important like… say, your mother-in-law-to-be, would be that much different, right? Third of all, this movie ends with something hopeful. Yes, it has a happy end, after all it’s a feel-good movie, but it doesn’t end with “and they live happily ever after”. It ends with something more like, “So, from here another story begins.” Just like the title says, this movie is just about the “yes or no”. We have yet to know what happens after.

So, whaddaya think? Interested? Wanna give it a try? (Psst, it can be found in the largest video website in the world, with the English subtitle, of course.)

Monday, March 26, 2012

You’ve Never Been


Note: I know it sounds awfully bitter to still lament about things that happened more than a month ago, but what the heck, that’s why this is my universe. Besides my life’s pretty much a hell hole right now. I’m gonna follow my own recipe for bearing any pain: dive right into it, cause it will hurt more, but then the pain will lessen. 

You’ve never been a lefty in the dark ages, killed by your parents as a child of the devil
You’ve never been a witch in Salem, burned to defend your calling
You’ve never been a Jew in Hitler’s reign, hunted like animals just for being born
You’ve never been a black man in apartheid law, born, lived and died a slave

You’ve never been a poor man with a child dying of hunger,
so you beat him to death for stealing a loaf of bread
You’ve never been a girl with a dying mother and no job to find,
so you spat at her when she sold herself on the street
You’ve never been a girl who was raped and got pregnant out of it,
so you mocked and looked down on her when she quitted school
You’ve never been a woman forced to marry a stranger and left her beloved behind,
so you told on her when she ran away and smirked when she was punished
And you’ve clearly never been in love
for you’re trying to forbid my heart from falling

There are lots of things you’ve never been, and I’ve never been, too. I don’t understand a lot of things that happened in this world, and what another person had to go through. But when they do tell, I listen. It’s not so hard to accept and forgive once you see the whole story, as long as you’re willing to step into their shoes. We might even learn a thing or two from their experiences. (Might be why I’m like a relationship consultant for my friends even though they know exactly that my love life is a big zero.) Too many people I know just never care, though. For them it’s their rules, their view, and if you disagree or view things differently, then you’re wrong. Their words are sweet and soothing, but what I see is lie and betrayal, precisely because they can’t say what’s really in their heart.

I just wish even one of them would listen. More than that I wish they would say aloud what they really think, cause they told me almost nothing. If they already said everything they knew, then they really knew nothing, which bothers me even more. If they know nothing, the should’ve ask me or look it up somewhere. Otherwise it seems that they don’t care about me even one bit – I’m not sure if I should be sad or angry – and that our friendship for all these years have been a lie, too. Lol… I’m surprised I’m not going crazy right now. I practically only have two friends right now – busy ones at that, and even at home I barely had anyone to talk to. (Yep, I half-blamed the coming out process for damaging my relationship with my mom.)

Well, I do develop some self-confidence over the years, and I’ve lost counts of people telling me how strong I am, but ‘confident’ and ‘strong’ are two words I haven’t used to describe myself these last three years. One of the top things in my mind after the rejection: Was I so unworthy that nobody even cares to listen? I wrote THREE long, unread explanations to two of my “friends”, and their reply was always short, and not related, to what I was writing. Not to mention another “friend” who usually kept in contact every once in a while, hadn’t contacted me at all since then. And yet another “friend” sent me a story of how children need a father and how damaging a lack of it will do to their future. (Oh please! That article was so invalid I’m not even sure where to begin!) Many people came out and kept their relationships intact, or they faced difficulties at first but their friends came to their senses sooner or later. These ‘friends’ I kept for years really prefer to pretend it didn’t happen and kept the silence – not just one or two of them, but all of them. The fault, I figured, must lie with me.

My logic is blaming them, but my heart keeps blaming myself… maybe that’s why I find it really difficult to let it go. Of course the fact that I’m in one of my lowest lows don’t help. I thank God for my sanity, but gosh, at times I just wish for “some insanity of that temporary kind”. Well, either way, I promise myself this would be my last post exclusively about this, online or otherwise. Just… wish me luck for the future progress.

Saturday, March 03, 2012

Nothing Comes From Nothing


“Any problem, big or small, within a family, always seems to start with bad communication. Someone isn't listening.”
Emma Thompson

Wow… got lots of bad news these few weeks. I only hope against hope that this last one thing I’m looking forward to will turn up well. My saving of a whole year is in stake right now. The biggest blow of all for me, though, is not a matter of money or job. As usual, it’s a matter of acceptance.

So this week I came out to my college friends. We’ve been friends easily for seven years. I’ve already come out to two of them (at least I thought so) before, and they actually managed to keep befriending me despite their super-religious upbringing. Now that we could contact each other more easily than ever, I thought to come out to the rest of them. I knew those three wouldn’t like it, and I was prepared for the worst, that they would not accept me and stop befriending me. You know what? Never prepare that for the worst outcome. There are more ridiculously cruel scenarios that could easily fill that ‘worst’ spot.

Something went noticeably wrong since the second I uttered, “I’m gay”. They were so friendly just before that, saying things in the line of, “Yeah, we’ve got a thing or two to do, but we’re listening, anytime you need us.” But after that word was out, it was eerily quiet for a looong time. Maybe not that long, but it felt like forever to me. And the first word to pop out was, “Huh? I don’t understand.” *Banging head on the wall.*

So, from there I got a six-hour interview by friends I’ve known for years. Well, come to think of it, I’ve got tons of things I don’t know about them as well, but still this one’s a bit different. They asked about sex (I wanted to talk about feelings, but they insisted that if it’s not about sex, then I might not be gay, and those feelings are just sisterly. Fine!). They asked about my future with women. They even asked about children. Only one out of three persons to whom I came out to that day basically said directly that she didn’t approve of it although she would like to remain my friend. She said anything she said wouldn’t change me anyway. That’s good and fine by me, compared to what I’m about to face. Honestly speaking, though, I knew staying ‘friends’ with her was not possible. She would keep her distance for sure, and unless out paths somehow crossed again, basically our friendship is over.

At the end of the ‘interview’ I’ve got a little surprise. It turned out that the first person out of those five I came out to, thought that I was kidding all these years! I came out to her at least five years ago , for crying out loud! And hell yes, her attitude towards me did change a lot since then, although I never know if it was because she changed or because she knew I’m gay. Either way, the only thing she asked right out was if I’ve change (back to straight). Hell no! We debated for a moment, and I compared me being gay with being left-handed. She said that’s just not the same thing, and if I didn’t want to change then anything she said would be a waste. First of all, the point of comparison is to compare things that are NOT the same, but are similar in some points. And second of all, that similarity in being gay and left handed is that we don’t choose! We just somehow discovered that we’re different than the majority of people. Interestingly, she said she was left-handed when she were a kid. I asked, then how did it change? Naturally, or you forced yourself to change just to fit the ‘normal’ society? And she didn’t answer. In my opinion, if it happened naturally, good for her. But if she forced herself (or was forced) to change, then I pity her.

Anyway, surprisingly another very religious friend, who was one of the two interviewing me that day, defended me – that I couldn’t change. Even if I went back to dating men, I would still be bisexual, not heterosexual. I didn’t see that coming! That was quite a comprehension, and I gained hope that perhaps this friend would learn to accept me one day, if she knew enough. That day might never come, though. Just the day after, she sent me a message, telling me that she felt like she had just woken up from a nightmare. She wished this was all just a nightmare. I let that comment go, although I laughed inside, “If you’re THAT affected just because I’m gay, just be thankful it’s not YOU who had to wake up everyday with that feeling years ago.”

Then out of the blue she gave me this little advice: next time I fall in love with a girl, I should never act on it. –> Clue one: she has no remorse whatsoever to ask me to be celibate! I heaved a deep breath and prepare myself for another interview. I asked her, why shouldn’t I? She said, “We know it’s wrong. Since you can’t change, don’t act on it.” I shot back, “Who said I think it’s wrong to be gay?” And she asked, “So you feel you’re right?” –> Clue two: she didn’t ask, “So you think being gay is right?” but “So you think YOU’re right?” These two sentences seem similar, right? Don’t be fooled. There’s a huge difference. The first sentence acknowledges me having a different thought and she was curious. The second one means that she thought I was so conceited that I think I’m righter than her (God). Then I told her that I didn’t mind discussing the bible with her, as long as she promised not to get angry quickly. I thought that since she told me she felt like thinking about it critically, then she must’ve had a clear mind today. –> Clue three: critical doesn’t mean logical. For religious people it means looking at a problem not from a humanly capacity anymore, but from a Godly view - by pretending to be God.

She agreed to the discussion, so I pulled bits and facts about religious teaching about gays. In the beginning she responded and was engaged, but the more facts I threw in, the less I heard of her. After writing non-stop for about 15 minutes, I ended it with, “Bottom line, I don’t know about right or wrong and it’s not my place. It’s God’s place to judge. But all this facts only said that people only nitpicking on gays. There are hundreds of other ‘sins’ that people do freely everyday, and nobody condemns them. Being gay is not even a choice. Those other things are freely done by choice, and yet people still do it (I’m taking eating shrimp and wearing clothes made from different fabrics for examples).” She finally responded after a while. The only words she said was, “So you think you’re right. If that’s so then whatever I said would be a waste.” –> Clue four: exact same words with the other two before her. I asked her directly, “Did you even read what I wrote?” She said, “What’s the use? If you’re already so sure that you were right, nothing I said would change that.” I exploded after that. I basically told her if she talked to me with the intention to judge me and told me I was wrong, then thank you but no thanks. I’ve already heard those everywhere, I don’t need to hear those from a ‘friend’. She didn’t even read what I had to say! Shouldn’t it be me who said, “If you’re already so sure that I was wrong, then no matter what I said is a waste!”? Here I thought we’re having a discussion. Even if for nothing else, where’s the respect and courtesy of LISTENING to what the other party has to say?

So I told about my indignation to the second person I came out to, the one I consulted before I came out to these three. She was the most worldly one out of five in my eyes, and at least she kept interacting with me online after I came out to her. She even said that if those three couldn’t accept me, then what a small-minded people they are. Still, after my experience with that last person, I wondered what she really thought of my being gay. Was it so hard to view this matter from a human point of view instead of Godly view? I already expected what her response would be, but it still hurt a lot. She does wish I would change, or that God would change me. Which is fine by me, cause at least she doesn’t voice it out in words or action if it weren’t for me asking. But then she said, “You said that it’s God’s place to judge, don’t you think this is perhaps God’s message to you, though your friends?” Hm… and what’s the message? That I don’t deserve happiness in my lifetime, ever? –> That‘s the only “message” I see. Here’s the logic: being gay is wrong –> don’t act on it or marry a man –> I don’t get to love and to be loved, OR, spending the rest of my life with someone I don’t love –> no happiness in a lifetime. And this is the last straw: she saw me as a lost person. She said, “It’s okay to be lost. We’ve all been lost, but then we met people who tell us the right way to go.”

That’s exactly why I’m hurt, and sad, and angry. I’ve been telling them (and everyone for that matter) again and again and again. I’m NOT lost. I’ve been lost before, when I was in high school. I prayed and prayed. I bought a compass. I opened Google Maps. I got myself a GPS. And finally here I am, after a loooong search: in a path walked by fewer people who like mountains, leading to the mountaintops. I ended up in a path different from theirs. And then, they so casually said, “Hey, your path is wrong. A person is supposed to go to the ocean. Come over here, we’ll save you to the right path.” For the love of God! I don’t even like the ocean, even if I end up in the ocean what good will it do me?! (Uh… this is metaphorically speaking. In reality I do like the ocean… :D) 

So I told her as such. And that I couldn’t be friends with them, but acquaintances, maybe. Well, the descriptions of ‘friends’ differ in the usage, so that’s a bit vague. What I mean is ‘real friends’, who’ll be there in times of need, who’ll go out of their way to help each other. They believe TOO much that the ocean is the ONLY way to go, the RIGHTEST way of all, then it shows every now and then in their words and their actions. Unintentionally they would see me as a lesser being than them (although I’m 100% sure they would deny it if asked, but seeing me as a lost person shows it enough). My opinion wouldn’t matter, cause it’s a ‘gay opinion’. Every time I make a mistake, it will come down to my being gay, not to me being a person. Any misfortune I encounter would be brushed with, “I feel for you, but it might be God’s way of telling you to go back to the right path.” I don’t even know ‘how’ a person can ‘turn straight’. By sleeping with opposite sex? Still gay! And adding to the sin for sleeping with someone they don’t even love. By saying, “I’m straight!”? Even easier, still gay though. By going celibate? Big news: still gay! The only way to go would be death – which is a path chosen by lots and lots of gay teens, and those peace-loving, family-oriented, never-stray-from-the-right-way people only said, “Good riddance!” Yeah, easy for you to say, monsters!

There’s been a huge misconceptions about gays for years, thanks for nothing, Sodom and Gomorrah (ask a gay person who’s on their right mind, if they would destroy those cities if they could, I bet they’ll answer yes. Why? Cause the evilness of the cities has nothing to do with their being gay!). Ask Indonesian audiences in this day and age about being gay, and I bet the answer would be around, “It’s the source of AIDS!” “It’s evil!” “It’s a disease!” “It’s a sin!” Answer that in front of Holland audiences and you’ll get a laugh. In Indonesia, where an atheist faces persecution, a man who wore a T-shirt with smart quotation could get beaten up on the streets, and religious wars erupted easily, who would dare to come out individually and clearly? Therefore people have no face to relate to, they have no example of a gay person. It also never affects them directly, so they never bother to find out the truth anyway. For them it’s an absolute alien, and they easily believe everything they heard about gays.

From my experience, I would like to offer an advice to you, friends and families who have someone come out to you: it’s okay if you can’t accept it in a blink. It’s okay if deep in your heart you want them to change. It’s okay if you cut all contacts with them or keep a distance from them – although it hurts at first, time will heal. Ignore them all you want, just don’t bully them with words or violence. Don’t pretend to accept them and then telling them how being gay is wrong and try to convert them. Chances are that by the time they come out to you, they’ve done everything they possibly can. For parents: don’t send your kids to religious school or camp or anything that promises they can change your kids back to ‘normal’. It’ll never make your kids ‘normal’, it’ll only make their life a living hell so that they’d rather crawl back to their closets. A shrink consultation is fine, but choose wisely. The well-educated ones should know that homosexuality is not a disease. Best thing you could possibly do is to ask lots of questions, and LISTEN carefully. No matter how good an intention you have, when you close your ears, that ends all possibility to understand anything.

My life has never been and will never be focused on me being gay. But being gay sure affect lots of things in my life. I’m much more sensitive to discrimination and bullying, intentionally or not. I’ve faced those all my life, and my being gay only tripled that. My only weapon is my logic, but since when do religious people have logic? They even rarely have human hearts. (I sincerely bow down in admiration to those few who are religious, logical, and kind at the same time. That was a total feat, cause usually those who are kind and logical lost their faith in return.) That said, the only friends I would keep are not only those who fully approved of me being gay, but also those who care for me enough not to let that tiny bit becomes an obstacle – and this group could easily be spotted by their willingness to listen and learn. Otherwise they’ll forever be those who mean well but will forever hurt you with actions and words. They will never be happy for you when you’ve found someone. They won’t show up at your wedding or even worse: they’ll say something bad AT your wedding that will totally ruin your mood (i.e.: “I’m happy for you, but I will pray that God will lead you and your friend to the right way in His own time.”). They will be happy if your spouse left you with person of the opposite sex (“I’m sorry to hear that, but good for her, she’s been saved. Will you be next?”). So, well, yes I’m saddened, but for my own future I’d rather be the ‘stupid’ one and keep my distance from them (cause they still insist they accept me, and it means it’s me who doesn’t want to be accepted). Goodbye for now, then.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Never Make A Clown Sad

I've long trusted in Ellen's jokes. She's been through a lot of ups and downs as a human being before she's as successful as now, and it's in her jokes where she writes down those experiences and the wisdom she got from them. Long, long time ago, she wrote a joke about there's nothing worse than a sad clown. (The exact quote was, "There's nothing worse than a sad lesbian. Except for a sad lesbian clown." But you get what I mean.) and I've just had an experience why it is so.

Really, there should be a rule somewhere that a comedian not be allowed to act in a tragic role. Heh heh. I only half-kidding. It's true! As sad as it is to watch a person going through a tragic fate, it's even harder when that person is usually the person who makes you laugh. I haven't encountered such a person in real world, and even though Ellen's story years ago was pretty close to the description, I didn't know her personally and I didn't even know her when she went through that. Now, I felt that way about one of Dodo Cheng's characters.

You see, I've forgotten where I found her in my childhood, but when I re-discovered her again last month, it was through some comedy movies. In fact, one of the reason I like her so much is because of her brilliance in comedy. Although she's not a comedian, she's a great actress who can even make me laugh with just her expression. But that's the problem! She's a great actress, and she did act in some serious roles. Women's Prison's Lynn, for example. Lynn is not really a tragic role, though. I'd say she's a fighter. And there's her role in 'Tiger Cage', where she acted as a policewoman, whose boyfriend was killed the night before their wedding. I'm not sure if it's because her acting is not strong enough or the character was supposed to restrain her feeling (she was a policewoman after all), I didn't feel that much hurt for her. (I actually anticipated it, hugging my pillow and saying repeatedly, "Ouch, ouch, ouch, this is gonna hurt like hell"... but it didn't hurt that much.)

Until To Liong To! That's the Heavenly Sword and Dragon Saber circa 1986, which was aired in Indonesia when I was just a kid. Since I've already re-watched Return of The Condor Heroes circa 1983, and I've found out that Simon Yam and Dodo were paired for Zhang Wu Ji's parents in that series, I think, what the heck, I'd re-watch it too. Problem is that I can't find any subtitle for that series, and it's in Cantonese! Luckily there's still a Chinese subtitle on it or I won't even understand one word said. Oh, and I read the translated e-book of the series, but unfortunately the book is only half-translated. Fine, then. I'd just watch it until the suicide scene. Damn my curiosity!



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I have to admit that Simon Yam might be my favorite on-screen partner for Dodo Cheng (don't even mention Chow Yun Fat! For some personal reasons, I HATE that guy!). I also quite enjoyed the plot, although it's pretty crazy. My father once warned me that Wuxia literature is crazy, but its craziness is the reason why it's so addictive. He was so right! The day I read the book, I didn't sleep all night finishing it. Of course along the story I yelled and cursed, "Are you fucking kidding me???" "For the love of GOD!!!" "C'mon, how the heck am I supposed to believe THAT???" "Fuck, fuck, fuck, nooooo!!!" But despite all those incredulousness I felt, I just can't stop. It's as addictive as Harry Potter, I tell ya.

Anyway, yes, I knew there was a double suicide of Zhang Cao San and Yin Su Su, but I didn't remember how they met and how they ended up killing themselves and left little Wu Ji alone. I thought it'd be over in one or two episodes of the TV series, but it turned out that their story lasted for 11 episodes. The story is a mix between wuxia, Titanic and Robinson Crusoe. Yes, crazy, right? I kinda like it, though. But it also has a bad effect on me: I warmed up to the characters. I began to like Xie Xun, I began to admire Zhang Cao San and adore Yin Su Su. And then, bam! The double suicide. It hurtssss!! First of all, they left a child behind, and he was bawling, so how can you not cry with him? (Not to mention there were also six grown up heroes who cried at that scene.) Second of all, they were cornered by everyone, to the point that even if they didn't kill themselves, they might be murdered one way or the other. Third of all, like I said before, Dodo Cheng usually makes me laugh. When she cried so tragically, how can it not break my heart? There's no sadder thing than a sad clown, indeed!

If Zhang Wu Ji ever blamed his parents for leaving him behind so young, I would blame Zhang Cao San. He knew the whole story of how his third brother getting hurt after Yin Su Su's confession, and he still blamed her for it? She did hurt him but on a curable level! She gave him an antidote and sent him back to Wudang, and even rescued him from his attacker - she even got poisoned during the rescue. What was he thinking, really, killing himself for that? It’s pretty selfish, in my opinion. He’s leaving Yin Su Su and Wu Ji alone to face those other people, who’d sure be going after them still for Xie Xun’s whereabouts. Yin Su Su’s suicide on the other hand, is understandable for me, cause how can she live with herself, knowing that she’s the reason of her husband’s suicide? Although she didn’t deserve to be blamed for all of the mess, Cao San was much more of an innocent. She simply had no choice but to follow him.

I actually remember about Yin Su Su’s suicide, but not this version. It’s Sharla Cheung’s version from Jet Li’s Kung Fu Cult Master. Her last words were quite memorable, asking her young son to revenge them and telling him never to trust women. “The more beautiful a woman is, the more capable she is to lie.” I have to laugh at that, cause indeed, Wu Ji’s life would be lived among beautiful women who were all quite good liars. Sharla’s suicide scene didn’t make me cry, though, cause Cao San actually ‘told’ her beforehand about his suicide. She didn’t cry, and Wu Ji collapsed before he had time to mourn. Dodo’s version, however, was more loyal to the book. She didn’t know Cao San’s plan, so when she found out about it, she was shocked, grieved, and guilt-stricken all at once. Wu Ji also was just found back, so it was quite overwhelming for her: she lost her husband, found back her son, and knew that she must leave her son again very soon. To her credit, Dodo acted out all of those feelings perfectly. Oh, and she actually crawled back to Cao San before she died. Wu Ji and Wutang people grieved deeply for some moments before Wu Ji collapsed. It was just tragic.  

Okay, now this is a bit out of topic, but I’ve been wondering. Since I came out to myself and to others, I feel some kind of responsibility to make sure I support people/company who support LGBT community. Of course this is not an obligation, but mostly I find that straight people who support LGBT people willingly are usually wise and kind. This is not my selfishness talking, I swear. They are wise because they don’t succumb to society and religion’s prejudice just like that. They are willing to look over past the ‘normal’ boundary into the reality that LGBT people are just… people. No more and no less. Logically speaking, they have to be somewhat kind, too, because they’re willing to support or fight for the rights of people who actually don’t concern them.

Let it be noted that I don’t automatically support/like everything gay, and I don’t dislike/trash everything straight, of course. There are narrow-minded companies who produced great products and there are narrow-minded people who are talented. Sad as it is, there are also LGBT members and open-minded people who are criminals, crazy, or even evil.  So far, though, I find that all my favorite people/companies are at least gay-friendly. Now I’ve been trying to search for an interview or something about Dodo Cheng that in some way implies her stand on this issue, to no avail. Please help me if you happen to be able to read/listen Chinese/Cantonese or have ever watched/heard about it. Besides my personal curiosity, it’d be nice to now how Eastern culture views the issue. I find it interesting that I’ve never put much thought on this before, since I’ve been a fan of Chinese/Hong Kong movies forever.

That’s it for now. I’m kinda busy. I said before there’s no way I’m downloading a hundred episode of a TV series in a language I don’t even understand. Well apparently I was wrong, cause I’m downloading them even as we speak. Heh heh :D

Update: Oooookay. ROTFL! Dodo’s character has just been hit on by a lesbian! Lol! And not just any lesbian, a really crazy one. Somehow I even heard Lucy Lawless’ name mentioned in the meeting of how to get rid of her, but I’m not sure. Well, I hope that doesn’t represent the lesbian stereotypes in HK, cause as crazy as I am, I would never pursue a straight women like that, I have no tendency to cut myself, and I didn’t understand the rest of the conversation. But honestly, if a lesbian like that went after me, I too would have literally run away like Ms. Mo did. Bwahahahah!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Oh, Carol!

Okay, first of all, a warning! This would be the outlet to vent out my frustration to the lack of source on the net about a Singapore sitcom, “Oh Carol!” starred ~ you guessed it ~ Carol ‘Dodo’ Cheng. I’ve been looking and looking and looking for that sitcom online for days, and I found next to nothing! I found two SMALL clips of that, though, and I KNEW I’ll love it. First of all, it’s Dodo Cheng and it’s a comedy. #2: It’s in ENGLISH!!!! Yay! #3: She played a character not unlike Ellen Morgan. Well, a straight Ellen. Or, Ellen in her first 3,5 seasons. #4: There’s a little girl involved. (No, I don’t have a Lolita complex! It’s just that an added cuteness couldn’t hurt, and would probably makes the sitcom funnier.)

So this time, instead of talking about the characters I love, let’s talk about the actress for a change. Come to think of it, it breaks my heart that there isn’t much Dodo movie left for me to download. As productive as she was, lots of them were TV stuffs and I’m not going to download 100-episode of a sitcom, much less when I don’t know if I’m even able to get the subtitle for that. I even have to accept the fact that I won’t be able to fully understand some movies I downloaded. Thank God there’s still the Mandarin audio or I won’t be able to understand it AT ALL! (For the record: on the scale 1-10, my Mandarin understanding is about 1. Hiks!)

I have to say Her Fatal Ways and Women Prison are still my favorite and her most memorable roles for me. I love her in every roles, though, cause she played each of them with such dedication that it’s hard not to believe her acting. And by Gods she’s been in so much variety of roles! From tough ass to damsel-in-distress. From high-class lady to prostitute. From beautiful to ugly. There is even one role of cross-dressing as a man (but sadly, not a real role as a man, like Cecilia Yip. Hiks!). Oh, and there’s one where she played Liang Shan Bo to Maggie Cheung’s Zhu Ying Tai. God only knows why they’re named such, cause they’re cousins who hate each other’s guts! (Note: Liang Shan Bo and Zhu Ying Tai are the couple from the famous Butterfly Lovers story.) Oh, and I inclined to believe her English with heavy accent in HFW 4 to be a part of her acting, cause in fact English was her strong point in school and years before she sang an English song perfectly. I’ve got to give her credit for that, cause I know many Cantonese speaking people who are not so good in English, and I swear THAT’S how they talk!!!

I wonder about one thing, though. I knew I grew up with her movies and her face is so familiar to me, but the only movie of her I remember watching as a kid is ‘Master Wong vs Master Wong’. Her acting left such a deep impression on me even though I knew nothing about love back then. I even remembered being so angry with Wong Fei Hung and that Aunt 13. Lol. Oh, and she played Tio Bu Ki’s mother early in the series (To Liong To 1986, CMIIW). I vaguely remembered that, but not so much. But where else? Why did she seem so familiar to me when I only watched two small roles of her?

Googling her is also a challenge for me. There is so little her in English, and not even one fan site. I kinda blamed Jackie Chan for this. In the ONE role she played with him, she played one of THREE damsels in distress. Gah! What a waste of international introduction! She’s remembered for that role only for that TOWEL SCENE (which, I admit, is pretty hot, but c’mon!). Why can’t he gave her a role like Michelle’s in Supercop? (Although, Michelle Yeoh and Jackie Chan will remain my favorite action partners, ever!)

Oh well, thankfully wikipeda/IMDB’s biography is reliable enough. I just had to laugh at one thing, though. I tried to google her name in Chinese, and then using Google Translate for the result. Because usually they write her name like this: DoDo(嘟嘟) or 鄭裕玲 (嘟嘟), when I translated it to English, they become: DoDo (beep) and Carol Cheng (beep). Worse: when there’s no parenthetic marks, the translation become: toot. LOL!

My biggest fan dream is perhaps for Ellen and Dodo to interview each other. They are really different on many levels, and yet I think they’re quite similar, too. Both keep their health intact (six packs at 50s, I tell ya! Dodo, not Ellen… haha), both have their own style and stick with it, both are successful hosts, both work really hard (rumor has it, Dodo once shot 9 movies in a day. That’s just crazy), both control their meals and do yoga… yup, it’ll be very interesting to watch.

For now, though, I’ll just share some pictures I’ve just got. It’s hard work, I tell ya! She’s still active until now, so the old pictures are usually hidden deep, deep, in the net, not to mention that when you google using her English name, there are not much to find. So when I found these, I almost cried, literally. Lol. Oh, and for a side note, it isn’t that I don’t find her beautiful nowadays (Granted, she’s not as pretty as her younger days, but now she looks stronger and maturer. That’s never a bad thing), but ogling a woman about my mom’s age is just.. wrong.

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If this is the 80’s I’ll be hanging the pic on the right on my door. Thankfully I can just carry it everywhere on my cell nowadays *evil laugh*

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The right one is sooooo Lynn! *Kakilemastangangemetarpanasdingin*

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Note to self: telling my future girlfriend to pose like the left pic when she’s waiting for me on our date!

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These two are just too beautiful not to post, don’t you think?

Last but not least, here’s a little gem I found several days ago. The singer is David Lui Fong, her boyfriend for 16 years (broken up in 2008). The song is not bad, but here’s what I’ve gotta say: I don’t have much money, so my dream girl would be a girl who’d beam like that after receiving a balloon from me. Lol. Seriously, that’s cute beyond belief. Usually I AM the girl who reacts like that after getting even a smile from someone I have a crush on, so it’ll be nice if one day I could be the one to cause such a reaction from another girl. :D

(Ps. Click on the pic for the vid.)


Saturday, October 08, 2011

My Fair Lady

You can see how much I love a woman (or a character) based on how much and how often I write about them. Lol. It’s true. I just can’t get my mind off of her just yet. I promise I will… in two months or so. :D

Okay, so, today I listen to Julie Andrews’ My Fair Lady (I still hold a grudge to whoever it is that decided she’s not PRETTY enough to star in the movie! Because of that bastard I don’t get to watch a full performance of Julie Andrews in maybe on of the best musical ever). Aaaand as you can guess, instead of Eliza Doolittle's face I got Cheng Shih-nan’s face singing “Just You Wait”. Lol. Well, it’s not completely out of place. If you ever watch ‘Her Fatal Ways’ and you listen to “Just You Wait”, you can imagine that Cheng Shih-nan could ever well be Eliza Doolittle, just with a different race. The same passionate and fiery spirit. The same conventional ways and manners. The same rich imaginations. Heck, like I said before, Julie Andrews and Dodo Cheng’s looks don’t differ that much!

One more similarity between the two: Eliza was finally changed into a proper lady. In Her Fatal Ways 4, Cheng Shih-nan also changed into someone I barely knew!!! Whoever decided it was a good idea to turn Cheng Shih-nan into a ‘true Hongkie’ (her word, not mine!) needed to see a doctor. The story even started FIVE years after Shih-nan stopped being a police and moved to Hong Kong. WTF? First of all, she looooooved her country so much, why would she move? Did she forget that although to reach her house in China she needed to walk for hours, her feet can’t stand the 8 stories climb in Hong Kong’s apartments? She didn’t even have a job in Hong Kong yet, and even after five years we still saw her struggling with making a living (in a chicken costume, no less!), and suddenly, she was asked to take over a big security company. Yes, the job suited her just fine, but it’s just… surreal.

She and her nephew still practiced English (and changed her name to Senyelgit Cheng), that’s a pretty good laugh (I really don’t like the accent, though, it’s reminding me of someone I don’t wanna be reminded of!). But I laughed the hardest when they started speaking French. OMG! How I wish I could share the brilliance of their French! (And now I understand why some people said French is the sexiest language. Hm.)

Yes, you saw that? One of the most obvious change in Shih-nan is in HER LOOK! I don’t know if I should complain or just droll. She’s MUCH prettier than the other Shih-nan (and older too), but that’s simply not the Shih-nan I loveeeeeee!!!! From looks only, my favorite Shih-nan is in the second movie. Really, really cute! Thank God for the change in clothes, though. Even her uniform is reaaaaally coooool this time! <Droooolll>

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<Wiping the droll> Yup. Ehm. Good change. Ehm. But she’s much too competent in her job! It somehow makes her much too cool to be Shih-nan (and damn, she’s really, really cool in this one. I miss my awkward Shih-nan! Hiks…)

And she fell in love, this time with a foreigner, no less, a Scottish man. He was sent by… his boss to attack Shih-nan’s only weakness: her virginity. Of course eventually he fell in love with her (she’s that much irresistible), but until the end we see no closure to that ‘secret mission’! Somehow we just assume she never finds out about that. I just want to see her beat the crap out of him, I admit. As much as I love seeing the cutesy that is Shih-nan-in-love, I can’t help but wanting him to just… go. I looove the scene in the elevator, though, when Shih-nan and John was robbed, and Shih-nan managed to turn back the situation…

And that stupid guy whispered thank you in her ear…

And she dropped the gun!!!! ROTFL!!!

Well, she still managed to catch the gun before it even hit the floor. Like I said, this Shih-nan is much too cool!


Oh, one other good thing about this movie is the addition of Sandra Ng as her cousin. They do often play together in movies, to my delight, although it’s not often that they get to actually interact. Even in this movie, they’re not in the same screen that often. Gah!


Oi, oi, where’s the lovely geeky glassessssss? How many wrongs can one movie make? Gah! If you’re not careful, I’ll be in love with Lynn instead. Lol.

Truth be told, I find it hard to stay faithful to Shih-nan. LOL! Wait, wait, hear me out! Dodo Cheng’s characters usually are quite different one from the other, but so far I find most of them are soooo kind-hearted, and that’s the weakness in me! Let’s see, so far it’s kinda tie between Cheng Shih-nan and Lynn (funny that is, should I choose the virgin or the hooker? No, I’m not badmouthing Lynn, that is indeed her profession!) – thanks to the failed HFW 4. And then this girl from Master Wong vs. Master Wong, who took lots of kicks from Wong Fei Hung, no less, in order to protect a little girl:

And to make her even cooler, she actually fell for Wong Fei Hung, but she helped him reunite with his lover instead. This character is half comedic and half dramatic, and I like her a lot, that’s for sure!

And then The Queen of Gambling. She’s got a great poker face, but she’s actually quite vulnerable. She practically risked her life finding money to bring her brother to a doctor. She’s really smart and she’s lucky! I can use some luck in my life, I’m really not on the lucky side, you know. Lol.

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I’m not sure if this one is just Dodo Cheng or one of her characters, but hot damn! I would drop a gun too if this girl is in front of me. Sorry, Michelle, you just got out-cool-ed! (Ps. You don’t want to know what I had to go through to find this picture. Hh…)

Yeah, well, Inspector Cheng is still topping the list for me, if it’s because I know about her more than any of those girls, and I’m pretty sure I can live being married to her. That’s saying a lot, cause her house needs hours of walking, has no electricity, has only MANUAL shower (one of the scenes I love most in the movies. It showed how proud she is! Hehehe…), and don’t forget about her daily antics that would grant curses for those around her. But just like those men around her, I too am attracted to her like moths to flame. And that’s what I am right now: a burned out moth. Oh. Shit. 

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Oh, Shit!

Have you ever been in love… (wait, don’t answer it just yet) …with a fictional character? It happens quite a lot to me but it’s not exactly love. More like a crush, that’s it. But this time I’m really falling for a very fictional character and I’m freaking out. Oh shit is right.

Before you judge me (yes, my love life is non-existent right now, but I’m not that desperate!), let me explain logically why you could easily fall for a fictional character.

1. You know the person very well. If it’s a fictional character in a book, it’s even more so, cause sometimes you’ll even know what’s inside their heart and mind. This is especially true for characters in TV series or books/movies with sequels.

2. If it’s a TV/movie character, big chance they’re played by an actress/actor you admire, who’s likely to be more beautiful than average people.

3. They possess skills or talents you admire.

You see, I admire lots of beautiful, talented actresses and I love some of them, but it’s very clear to me that they’re not the characters they played (especially since most of them are VERY different than the person they portrayed on screen). Therefore, although I can love some actresses, I don’t think I can really fall in love with them.

Of course, there are more disadvantages than advantages of falling for a fictional characters (are there really any advantages at all for that?). But since when does love and attraction care about logic? You get to know someone, and suddenly you care a great deal about them. That’s it. Here are some obvious disadvantages that come to mind right now:

1. You’ll never meet them. This is the blatantly obvious one. Even if you meet the actress/actor/author, they’re just not the person you fall in love with.

2. Some confusion/frustration when you see the same actress/actor playing a different role.

3. There’s absolutely nothing you can do except to wait until the feelings go away, and that’s quite a torture. LOL!

Well you know whom I love right now, right? (Clue: read the post before this.) Today I happen to say, “Oh, shit!” a lot more than usual, and I giggle afterwards EVERY damn time! That’s ridiculous, really. And it’s not like I say it on purpose. I had to eat instant noodle for breakfast. I forgot to bring my towel to the bathroom. I had to wait 30 minutes for my… well, ‘client’. I forgot to wear my thicker jacket so I was freezing all 1 hour to and from the ‘client’s house. My jacket’s zipper was broken. My 1 GB download that I’ve downloaded for 3 days turned out to be useless after all. My internet couldn’t connect when I needed it most. My dinner only consisted of two slices of bread. My sleep was interrupted by an urgent request (but not an important one!) from my mother. Damn right, I said “Oh, shit!” more times today than the average week. But you know what? Thanks to that stupid being in love business, I giggle every time I said it, so my irritation goes away real quick.

Oh, and more ‘oh shit’ today when I was watching “Women’s Prison”. Another movie starred Dodo Cheng, although she’s not the main character. That’s a pretty tough movie, although somehow it still maintains some light-heartedness. Lots of agony and “oh shit” moments, though… if you watch this movie, you’ll kinda know what’ll happen next, and it’s not good! Particularly this one scene:

Ouch indeed. The movie built up well, and the final ‘battle’ is just.. wow. It’s a very good movie in my opinion, and from the VERY few reviews I read about this movie, I’m not the only one. I wonder why this movie is so underrated. Controversial? Maybe. Going to labor and raising kids in the prison, lesbian rape, drugging the prisoner, and lots of physical fights.

I’ll admit that I couldn’t take my eyes off of Dodo in this movie. She’s a brilliant all-around actress, but she’s more known to her comedy than anything else – and she can do that with just her facial expression. It’s another testimony of her brilliance that she can play this Lynn girl so perfectly. Arrogant, uneducated (totally opposite to the bookish Cheng Shin-nan), rash, tough, but fair and kind-hearted.


The main character has my sympathy. She’s the typical ‘good girl who goes to jail just because’ – in this case, she hurt a loan shark who hit her and her mother. She’s a woman with dignity, and she has a pretty hard time adjusting to prison life. But she’s pretty lucky compared to others in that prison, so I don’t care that much for her. I respect her bravery and her loyalty to her friends, but that’s it.

Dodo’s character, on the other hand, makes me feel. She used to be the Big Sister in the prison, and she doesn’t like knowing how the new leader takes the role. The new Big Sister, aka Fatty, with the help of the prison guard started picking on her, and naturally she fights back. She knows she’s right and she won’t obey the prison guard, and they drugged her. If I was there I would’ve been drugged too, for attacking the guards. It just broke my heart seeing such a lively spirit being reduced into someone who can’t even eat on her own (and she has face and body with my movie wife, dammit!).

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The part with Lynn’s being drugged is one of the most heartbreaking moment of the movie. Even when she’s drugged she still refuses to sign a paper in which it was stated that she agreed to receive the drug. Therefore they kept drugging her. The main character, Kelly, was put into an isolated cell for helping her walk to the toilet (even in her drugged condition, Lynn tried her best to make Kelly release her when the guard came. See why I admire her so much?). That left Lynn in the care of her other friend, Jane, who practically did everything for her. Some heartbreaking scenes here, too, when Lynn cried while Jane was washing her feet. It was Jane who finally succeed in making Lynn signing the paper and gaining back her strength.

The final battle has one of my favorite Dodo Cheng expression ever:


Love it cause usually Dodo’s face makes me laugh (or when it’s dramatic it makes me cry). There’s no way that’ll make me laugh or cry. I'll just run away as far as I can! Lol. No, seriously. It’s a rare role for Dodo Cheng (or perhaps I just don’t care to watch her movies with a genre I don’t like).

Aaaaaanyway. Bottom line is, while trying to logically defend myself, I still think falling in love with a fictional character is pretty lame and stupid. Haha. But I REALLY can’t help it, so I’d just enjoy it while it lasts, right? Oh, and while we’re talking about love, please check out this video I made. Enjoy :D

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Ode to Inspector Cheng


Let me sing the song of a magnificent police inspector. Her name is Cheng Shin-nan. Quite frankly, you’ll want to kill her (or kill yourself for that matter) if you ever meet her. But once you know her you’ll find yourself drawn to her and the next thing you know you can’t get her out of your mind it makes you crazy.

Okay, maybe that’s just me. Lol. You see, I looooooove women. I admire lots of them and I even adore some of them, fictional and real women alike. It’s even easier with TV/movie characters, as we could get to know the character, and adore them, not necessarily the actresses. But as much as I love Xena I couldn’t imagine having her as my wife. As much as I adore Idy Chan’s beauty, living with Xiao Long Nu in the tomb will perhaps bore me to death. Judging by her character, Inspector Cheng’s antics might also shorten my life a great deal, but that would still be a very interesting and happy life. Yup, out of all TV & movie characters, the one that I’ll be very likely to actually fall in love with and will want to marry if they ever come alive is Cheng Shin-nan.

How do you explain a person like Inspector Cheng? She is a police inspector in mainland China. She dresses like your great great great grandmother. Her personality is much like Rachel Berry but her voice is the total opposite, and heck, her choices of songs are beyond terrible. She can ramble more in one breath than Ellen Morgan (and my mom). She is patriotic to a fault, but amazingly, not small-minded. She’s tough but actually very girly. She’s bossy to bone. She’s conventional but logical. And like Kenshin in Samurai X, in the critical time she’s the one you can count on.

Okay, some facts about her:

1. Her guns are decorated.



Well, at least three of them were decorated, and it’s only shown in the first movie. The first gun was confiscated by the Hong Kong police because she’s not allowed to carry a gun. The second was used to hurt the friend of the escaping criminal. The third one showed up out of nowhere in the final battle. I find it charming, and a nice testimony to her personality.

2. She took threats to her homeland seriously… however trivial it is.

No kidding! The father of the Hong Kong detective who lent a room for her and her nephew was a veteran revolutionary. He sang revolutionary song at night, they countered it with a Chinese anthem, and from there the singing battle went on (this is the first time I heard a ‘singing battle’ in any movie. It was brilliant, really!!!)

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And the morning after, the battle continued…

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3. She can out-drink an army of veterans

And still went out to enjoy Hong Kong afterwards.

4. She is innocent.

That’s not just to say that she’s a virgin. She wore pajamas under a bikini, for heaven’s sake! Note to any (male?) criminals: if you want to escape her, just pull down your pants.

But it’s her innocence that makes her able to love in a very cute way. And that expression actually makes me wanting so much to be the one causing it in the first place, dammit!
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(Gah, this one minute of expressions has as much effect on me as Emma Thompson’s broken heart scene in Love Actually! I loooove it. Especially when she tried to shake the giddiness off but broke out a smile anyway…)

5. She looooooooooves to sing. Especially in front of a crowd. Especially karaoke.

And when she gets the chance, not even her own nephew is allowed to sing a line.

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I tried my best to find the video of this part in Mandarin (found one in Cantonese, but I find it less funny…), but I can’t. If you can, please do watch. Bellyache from laughing is guaranteed. This is when they asked to sing another song, but the karaoke operator hated their singing (rightfully so) and played a donation show instead. Since karaoke is about singing the subtitle and since there WAS subtitle on the screen, they SANG it!!!


Did I mention that her singing literally broke glasses?

6. She loves to dress up. But her taste is just… gaaaaah! 


Well, still better than her everyday clothes, though. But why can’t they dress her up like this at least once per movieeeee? Hiks…

7. Her English is… well… unusual.

She taught her troops THIS:

Which naturally resulted in a daily usage of:

Yeah, yeah, it’s only a semi-dirty word. What’s so special? HER PRONOUNCIATION, I tell you what!

8. She LOVES to eat. You know my deal with women and food. My ultimate love is women who STEAL food.




9. She’s got a magical purse that can produced unlimited number of weapon (be it fake or genuine ones), and a car that can fit unlimited number of people.



Not to mention that her use of weapon also quite creative:

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(From left to right: Chinese Public Security, Taiwan Interpol of State Security, and Royal Hong Kong Police. Poor guy… he’s not even a criminal but he offended the police from three countries at the same time!)

Oh well, it’s really quite impossible to describe her properly. You’ve gotta get to know her yourself to understand her charm. But one thing I can say for sure. I’m charmed! There was even one scene that I’m pretty sure made me look like this:

And that scene actually replayed itself in my dream. Lol. No, it’s not THAT naughty, but I certainly won’t tell in details. :p

So that’s my movie wife for now. I left the TV wife spot cause I haven’t found her. The closest one was Monica Geller, and that makes a lot of sense cause I’m practically a female Chandler Bing, but since she’s married I won’t claim her. Oh, and actually the movie is quite good. Yes it’s kinda old but it’s golden, really. There are lots of surprises and creative ideas used. The English title is Her Fatal Ways and it has 4 sequels. Just please don’t fall for my movie wife, OK??? :D