Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square

THE BEAUTIFUL WASHING MACHINE
(Mei Li de Xi Yi Ji)

Year: 2004
Country: MALAYSIA
Language: Malaysian
Run Time: 113 minutes

Comedy, Malaysian style. Writer-Director James Lee?s monochromatic interiors, huge but empty grocery stores, and soulless homes betray the alienation found in sprawling, modern-day Kuala Lumpur?desperation for connection, especially for men. The day cranky bachelor Teoh buys a second-hand washing machine seems like any other, yet it will drastically change the lives of five people. In a magical realist move, the mostly broken washing machine becomes a lovely, mute girl. Teoh takes advantage of her, making her a virtual domestic slave in his home. Pushing it even further, he pimps her on the streets. She finds refuge with widower Mr. Wong, whose adult daughter is upset, and whose wayward son is intrigued. The mysterious girl is extremely submissive and rarely shows emotion, unless a kind-hearted man tries to ?fix? her. Highly symbolic, beautifully conceived, composed, and shot, this is a parable of isolation. You?ll never look at a washing machine the same way again.

Screenplay
James Lee

Director
James Lee

Producer
Lorna Tee

Cinematography
Teoh Gay Hian

Editing
Grace Tan

Principal Cast
Loh Bok Lai, Patrick Teoh, Amy Len, Berg Lee, Yap Kop Chong, Chin Lee Ling

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