Tag Archives: Thai

Mingmonkul Sonakul – I -San Special AKA Kuen pra chan tem doueng (2002)

Synopsis
The soundtrack to a radio soap opera set in a luxury hotel is acted out by characters who are riding a ramshackle bus from Bangkok to a small town in Thailand’s Northeast. When the bus stops, the drama in the characters’ real lives can be seen. In different cirumstances, it’s not hard to imagine the characters – a young small-town girl (glamorous model), an older woman (hi-so boutique owner), an illegal Burmese immigrant (hotel waitress), half-Thai backpacker (handsome hotel owner), soldier (ladyboy hostess) and dodgy businessman (dodgy businessman) – assuming the lives of their larger-than-life soap opera alter egos Read More »

Anocha Suwichakornpong – Jai Jumlong (2021)

How do you put together the puzzle if the image is missing? You start from individual pieces and see how they fit together. There are the four young actors on a trip to Kanchanaburi, “a city so meaningful, I’d rather die if I don’t get to be with you”, as the song goes. They stay in a hut in the forest by the river, drink on the terrace, talk and watch the fireworks at night, the same scene they later re-enact on the stage set back in Bangkok. The harried young woman is lost in the same forest, or maybe in the young actress’ dream; when the screen splits into two distinct parts, it’s also not clear how they fit together. The foursome came to Kanchanaburi to see the museum, but it’s closed for refurbishment, although they still manage to walk along Hellfire Pass. You can hear the sounds of construction as the scenery rushes past on the train; you can see the rails rush towards you from the window of the theatre set. If you follow the Death Railway back from the west, you reach Bangkok too, which was once home to the Dusit Zoo; the actors also cluck, howl and bark, in city and country alike. What if the missing image isn’t one place or moment in time, but many?(From Berlinale Forum) Read More »

Pom Bunsermvicha – Lemongrass Girl (2021)

The young Piano gets lumbered with the job of keeping the set dry during the shoot for Anocha Suwichakornpong’s latest film Come Here. Only she seems capable of warding off the rain. Read More »

Apichatpong Weerasethakul – A Letter to Uncle Boonmee (2009)

Quote:
A slowly moving camera captures the interiors of various houses in a village. They are all deserted except one house with a group of young soldiers. They are digging the up the ground. It is unclear whether they are exhuming or burying something. The voices of three young men are heard. They repeat, rehearse, memorise a letter to a man named Boonmee. They tell him about a small community called Nabua where the inhabitants have abandoned their homes. The wind blows fiercely through the doors, and the windows, bringing with it a swarm of bugs. As evening approaches, the sky turns dark. The bugs scatter and the men are silent.

A Letter to Uncle Boonmee is part of the multi-platform Primitive project which focuses on a concept of remembrance and extinction set in the northeast of Thailand. Boonmee is the main character of the feature film of the project. Read More »

Apichatpong Weerasethakul – Hua jai tor ra nong AKA The Adventure of Iron Pussy (2003)

Quote:
She’s gorgeous, she’s dangerous – and she sings! Male convenience store clerk by day, fabulous drag queen/ secret agent by night, Iron Pussy must yet again come to the rescue! In this feature-length reprise, award-winning Thai director Apichatpong Weerasethakul and writer Michael Shaowanasai (who also plays Iron Pussy) have created a spy-thriller-kung-fu-musical-western-forbidden-love story that, like our heroine, defies convention. Read More »

Apichatpong Weerasethakul – The Anthem (2006)

Quote:
The Anthem is a celebration of filmmaking and the viewing experience. In Thailand, before every cinema film screening, there will be a Royal Anthem before the feature presentation. The purpose is to honour the King. It is one of the rituals imbedded in Thai society to give a blessing to something or someone before certain ceremonies. The Anthem presents a ‘Cinema Anthem’ that praises and blesses the approaching feature for each screening. This audio-visual purification process is performed by three old ladies. They also channel energy to the audience in order to give them a clear mind. Read More »

Tulapop Saenjaroen – People on Sunday (2020)

In this updated homage to the 1930 German silent film of the same title, Thai artist Tulapop Saenjaroen examines the paradox of people relaxing while being filmed. As a film shoot appears to be in perpetual delay, crew members kill time fiddling on their smartphones, all the while under the persistent gaze of the camera. Read More »