I tried to make "She Knows" accessible to people unfamiliar with the source, since I assumed that would be most of the audience at Wiscon. But if you're interested in more background, here it is:
- If you're in the U.S., So Close is available in DVD at Netflix. (I don't know about streaming.)
- It is a fun action movie where the men are basically cardboard cut-outs and the most important relationships are between women.
- It is about two inches deep.
- Yes, it is canonically that slashy.
- Sisters Lin (Qi Shu) and Su (Wei Zhao) are freelance assassins hunting down the corporate bigwigs who murdered their (Lin and Su's) parents. Lin is the assassin and Su is the hacker. (Assassination also seems to provide a very comfortable standard of living.) They use a
magic spellcomputer program developed by their father, which can penetrate any network's security and take control of any system, to create havoc and mask Lin's escapes. Kat Hong (Karen Mok) is the cop who is hunting them down.
- At no point whatsoever are the surveillance and control implications of this technology addressed.
- Although I (maybe unfairly) consider this the kind of movie made by men who like kick-ass women as a kink (see also: J.J. Abrams and Joss Whedon), it is also a movie where women are depicted as in control of the gaze. The women control the cameras and the computer monitors. In one fight scene, where Lin and Kat sequentially rip each other's shirts, exposing their bras. When Kat's shirt is ripped, her male assistant looks hastily away. When Lin's shirt is ripped, he looks back until Su pushes his face in the opposite direction with her gun. You can't get more literal than that.
(I was so sad I couldn't fit that scene in the vid, you guys. It made me laugh EVERY TIME.)
- There is a lot of gender role reversal, as in Lin's incredibly bland love interest, who is there purely to provide unconditional emotional support for her despite her assassinating ways, and as in Kat's sexual harassment of her assistant, which I did not find amusing.
- SO MUCH cutting edge (incredibly obsolete) late 90s tech. I had to include the Palm Pilot out of sheer nostalgia.
- ( Spoilery warnings: )