Title

Magic, medicine, cannibalism : the China demon in Hong Kong horror

Document Type

Book chapter

Source Publication

Horror to the extreme : changing boundaries in Asian cinema

Publication Date

1-1-2009

First Page

145

Last Page

159

Publisher

Hong Kong University Press

Keywords

Applause Pictures, Three: Going Home, Three Extremes: Dumplings, Ghosts, Ghostly Bodies, Aging, Illness, Immortality, Medical Practices

Abstract

This chapter focuses on two signature horror films from Applause Pictures, Three: Going Home (Peter Chan Ho-sun, 2002) and Three Extremes: Dumplings (Fruit Chan, 2004), and analyzes their new treatments of the transgressive ghosts and ghostly bodies. The mythical and ghostly presence of Chinese migrants is central to the narrative of the two horror films, and yet China is not a wholly negative presence when it comes to problems of survival, competition, and ambition. Here China resurfaces as a desirable alternative to overcome aging, illness, and mortality. However, the Chinese cultural legacy, such as with traditional medical practices, is quickly dissolved and transformed into a monstrous invasion and occupation. Horror, in this regard, displaces the backlash against the market economy's preoccupation with youth, beauty, and fitness.

DOI

10.5790/hongkong/9789622099722.003.0008

Publisher Statement

Copyright © Hong Kong University Press 2009

Access to external full text or publisher's version may require subscription.

Additional Information

ISBN of the source publication: 9789622099722

Full-text Version

Publisher’s Version

Recommended Citation

Yeh, E. Y.-y., & Ng, N. H.-t. (2009). Magic, medicine, cannibalism: The China demon in Hong Kong horror. In J. Choi, M. Wada-Marciano (Eds.), Horror to the extreme: Changing boundaries in Asian cinema (pp. 145-159). Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press.