Untold Scandal review

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"The men and women in this tale are lecherous and immoral beyond belief," begins Je-yong Lee's naughty retelling of Dangerous Liaisons. Transporting Choderlos de Laclos's novel from 18th-century France to Chosun Dynasty Korea, Untold Scandal is a simmering tale of chastity, revenge and bedroom machinations in which Jo-won (Yong-jun Bae) and Lady Cho (Mi-suk Lee) embark on a plan to separate a virgin (So-yeon Lee) from her knickers. After 10 screen adaps, Laclos's bed-hopping intrigue is perilously familiar, but the Korean setting and lush visuals more than justify this retelling. Filling the screen with seductive reds, raunchy purples and beguiling yellows, Lee recreates the splendour of Korea with a painterly eye and even squeezes in some historical asides on the impact of Catholicism in the East. Meanwhile, his impressive cast generates enough panting desire to rip even the tightest laced kimono open.

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