301.302 | Movie Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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301.302

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Perversely droll and at times archly pretentious, this 1995 feature from veteran Korean director Chul-soo Park carries to a logical if grotesque conclusion the metaphor of eating disorder as a postmodern society's psychological malaise. Its title refers to the occupants of adjacent apartments in a swanky modern high-rise in Seoul: "301" is a newly divorced gourmet cook who overeats whenever she's emotionally stressed, "302" a reclusive anorexic magazine writer. In the course of the two neighbors' emotional tug-of-war, in which 301 keeps trying to give food to 302, the pasts of both are revealed. The explanations of their ills--one was molested by her butcher stepfather, the other led the boring existence of a housebound wife married to a yuppie workaholic--are rather predictable, though each unfolds in a visually arresting way. Park uses a glossy tone and distorted angles to reinforce the sense of sterility of their antiseptic confines--of obsession with consumption as a substitute for emotional needs as well as sex. Eun-jin Bang, who plays 301, is the embodiment of frustrated lust as she slices and dices. Facets Multimedia Center, 1517 W. Fullerton, Friday, May 31, 7:00 and 9:00; Saturday and Sunday, June 1 and 2, 3:00, 5:00, 7:00, and 9:00; and Monday through Thursday, June 3 through 6, 7:00 and 9:00; 281-4114.

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