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The Third Wife
2019 1h 36m R
In 19th century rural Vietnam, May is ready to become the third wife of a wealthy landowner. Little does she know that her hidden desires will force her to decide between living in safety and being free.
An Nam Productions
Three Colors Productions
Cast of The Third Wife
Nguyen Phuong Tra My
Tran Nu Yen Khe
Le Vu Long
Lam Thanh My
Mai Cat Vi
Nguyen Thanh Tam
Khanh An Tang
Thi Kim Ngan Pham
The Third Wife Reviews
San Francisco Chronicle
G. Allen Johnson
What we have here is a small, delicate mini-masterpiece, and bright new talent behind the camera.
There's a fury underlying this film that goes unexpressed to the point of almost going unacknowledged, and it saps "The Third Wife" of a strength and momentum it could use.
An unabashedly reticent arthouse film, The Third Wife takes its time drifting through May's coming of age, which will try the patience of some audiences.
San Diego Reader
Perhaps most remarkable is the contrast between the intense interior drama and the lush, languorous world in which it rages.
Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews
An art-house treat with sparse dialogue and aesthetics covering up the emotions.
Gently dipping us into the long ago and far away past, Ash Mayfair's directorial debut brings an intimate immediacy to the re-creation of rural Vietnam in the late 19th century.
Writer-director Ash Mayfair makes a hauntingly beautiful feature film debut with The Third Wife, a quietly devastating period drama based on her own family history.
Asian American Press
A film with minimal dialogues, The Third Wife is a visual story. Its sensual aesthetics and dream-like sequences wrap a harsh reality: the plight of women in a patriarchal society.
An audience-friendly affair which deals with harrowing subject-matter in restrained, tactful and aesthetically entrancing style...
Film Festival Today
Christopher Llewellyn Reed
It's almost too inert for much of its length ... sidetracked away from important issues into glossy softcore porn.
New York Times
The movie is... trapped in the same claustrophobia it depicts, unsure of how much it can or wants to get away with.
Always Good Movies
Mayfield didn't thrill me with her methods of bringing out emotion and intimacy, but revealed a huge capacity to embrace aesthetic filmmaking.
Vietnamese writer/director Ash Mayfair makes her feature debut inspired by the life of her own great-grandmother, its visuals (by "Pop Aye" cinematographer Chananun Chotrungroj) informed by the beauty of the natural world.
[Director Ash] Mayfair has created a lush portrait of a time that wasn't without its pleasures, but in which women also led severely proscribed lives.
[Ash] Mayfair crafts a composition that feels masterful beyond her slim CV in emotional complexity, plot and orchestration.
Philadelphia Gay News
Gary M. Kramer
"The Third Wife" is as beautiful as it is subtle while considering ideas about purity and sin, passion and patriarchy. Mayfair has captured a bygone world with precision. Her film is truly exquisite.
Los Angeles Times
There is much that is finely wrought here as a tactile slice of women's history told in careful observances, hidden textures and the sights and sounds of nature unbound.
The Third Wife spends its time considering the hidden depths of these women not only as defined by their individual wants but also by what society dictates upon them.
In her impressive feature film debut, writer and director Ash Mayfair doesn't parade us with profound tragedy and hardship; rather, she takes difficult subject matters and embellishes them with tranquil shots and dialogue.
Mournful work, but revealing, endeavoring to be as human as possible with a difficult subject matter that challenges customs and forms of power.
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