Dumplings. Who doesn’t like them? Steamed or friend, they’re delicious and delicate dough filled with scrumptious delights. Unless, they are made by Aunt Mei. Her dumplings are a bit more diabolical in nature, and her secret ingredients are killer.
Fruit Chan’s film about dumplings whose filling contains the secret to eternal youth was adapted from a short. Its horror exploits a number of cultural taboos and explores obsession with youth, failing marriage, explicit and implicit racism, and abortion.
Movie: Dumplings (Gaau ji)
Deadly Recipe: How to put this delicately … ok, there’s no way. The dumplings are filled with aborted fetuses. Apparently, they work wonders on the skin and the libido. Now you know.
Chef: Aunt Mei. Keeper of the dumplings, Aunt Mei is very open about her “secret” filling, which keeps her looking half her age. Like any auntie, she wants to take care of the people who enter her kitchen and her sweetness and openness are in stark contrast to the horrors she’s cooking.
Culinary Kill: Well, there are only a few ways to get the filling and they are pretty horrific. On top of that, these dumplings cause a crazed sexual impulse in the people who eat them.
Leftovers: Probably one of the grossest things in this movie, and there are a few, is the sound of the dumplings being eaten. Fruit Chan exploits the viewers knowledge of what’s in the filling with a munching and slurping sound that triggers a gag reflex.