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1 hrs, 36 mins
Le Vu Long, Nguyễn Phương Trà My, Nguyen Thu Hường Maya
Ash Mayfair

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Lushly filmed with poetic sensuality, The Third Wife recalls the sensibility of The Scent of Green Papaya, whose director served as artistic advisor here. In late 19th century rural Vietnam, 14-year-old May (a phenomenal performance by Nguyễn Phương Trà My) is given away in an arranged marriage and becomes the third wife to her older husband, wealthy landowner Hung (Le Vu Long). A lowly newcomer in the insular household, she soon learns she will only gain status if she can produce a male child. Finding herself pregnant, she awaits the birth, but her path towards security is fraught with danger when May starts to feel a forbidden attraction for the second wife, Xuan (Nguyen Thu Hường Maya). As May observes the unfolding tragedy of secret passion and its devastating consequences, she must make a choice, to either carry on in silence and safety, or forge a way towards personal freedom. Written and directed by Ash Mayfair, whose assured debut signals the emergence of a young female whose aesthetic sensibilities, cinematic language and extraordinary ability to illuminate the past will captivate audiences. (Fully subtitled)

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