Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

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Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby hengcs » Sun Mar 16, 2008 12:55 pm



Director: Poj Arnon
Cast: Rattanaballang Tohssawat, Chaiwat Thongsaeng

The film garnered Best Cinematography, Best Sound and Best Screenplay in Thailand National Film Association Awards 2008
click
http://foreignfilms.yuku.com/topic/1922

Synopsis
A killer was on his last mission to kill a policeman. However, he had a change of heart, and the destiny of these two guys changed too.

My Thoughts

-- Two things really impressed me in this film
... the cinematography ... a few scenes were postcard like, painting like, picturesque, ...
... the soundtrack ... one of the most haunting music i have heard ... it wrenches your heart at the right scenes ...

-- Now the screenplay ... i have so many things to say ... IMHO, i would prefer it to end at the train station, when fog was waiting for cloud ... but the film went on for quite some time after that ... while i do prefer it to end earlier, i have no qualms over these remaining scenes ... why?! although one may "fault" it for having too much melodrama as well as twists and turns near the end, i have to admit humbly -- by the end of the film, it does wrench one's heart ... the film is very depressing ...

if one is willing to overlook the melodrama in this film (and actually in numerous asian films or tv series), the film actually has important messages and interesting parallels ... i shall leave it for you to figure it out ...

PS: I like the names in the film ... cloud, fog, stone and sand ... hee hee ...

Conclusion
It is not as bad as some local media rated it (i.e., with one star out of five). In my very humble opinion, apart from some excessive melodrama, it is quite worth watching, a very depressing film indeed. After all, it did garner the best screenplay not without reasons. Have those critics who are too harsh on it ever wonder why it did win the best screenplay award?! There are important messages and interesting parallels ...

I will recommend it mainly for two reasons -- the cinematography and the VERY haunting music indeed ...
hengcs
 


Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby arsaib4 » Sun Mar 16, 2008 11:58 pm

I wouldn't get too caught up with all these awards and nominations that certain films have a tendency to accumulate. Why? Because in most cases, even at festivals, they aren't presented by those who're familiar with this art form the most.
arsaib4
 

Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby hengcs » Mon Mar 17, 2008 1:12 am

(1) the awards
... since the Subhanahongsa Award (presented by the Federation of National Film Associations of Thailand) is the most recognized in Thailand, i was just trying to give it its due recognition. for many who are not from thailand, at least it drops some hint to what the thais feel about their movies for that year ...

PS: a surf of the net would confirm the fact that ...
... most agree that its cinematography was great
... quite a number also mention its music
... as for the plot, i think only the local media was too harsh on it (even though i respect that all are entitled to their own views).

My point of the award is: given that it is the most recognized in thailand, and there is tough competition from Love of Siam (which rightfully deserves the Best Film and Best Director award) etc, maybe it is worth pondering over why the screenplay won over the other films ... is it something that we as outsiders (culturally, religiously, etc) fail to appreciate?!

(ii) the melodrama
... well, when you read OTHER reviews, they heavily pen it over a few points, which i can try to help the director/scriptwriter justify ...
e.g.
(a) many mention the melodrama ... well, you have to accept some cultural differences here ... if one were to recall The Overture (click http://foreignfilms.yuku.com/reply/3223#reply-3223 ), I did recall mentioning the thunderstorm, and the "love at first sight scenes", so it is not a hindsight wisdom or bias; likewise, for The Tin Mine (click http://foreignfilms.yuku.com/search/topic/topic/1898 ), there is also some melodrama scenes ... so, let's be kinder becos that is part of their style ...

(b) many mention about the twists and turns ... although at times, i do agree that it may be "too eventful", one has to realize 2 things: (1) time is compressed, the last few scenes are time in fast forwards, so only essential plots are depicted, hence it comes across as FULL OF EVENTS (2) last time, i have a friend who doesnt exactly like Hongkong TVB series, claiming that how can so many things happen to one person. my answer is: it can happen and it does happen, the only thing is: whether you know who these people are ... there are many people in this world with shocking and traumatic things happening to them, but just becos you do not know who they are, it does not mean it cannot ALL happen to a person ...

(c) finally, the scantily clad scenes ... well, regardless of the director's actual intention, we may like to ask, are people scantily clad at home (or in the place they stay)?! but of course, even in singapore, some people do that ... when we visit some of our friends, the males in their family may be rather scantily clad ...

In sum, my point in writing the review is this:
-- while i do respect differing views (even great films can be polarizing), i thought 1 star out of 5 is simply too harsh, and the points they mention can be "justified" to some extent ...
-- i want to credit the film for what it deserves ... at least for its cinematography and its music ... NO JOKE ... the cinematography and music is great on a BIG SCREEN, enclosed theatre ...
hengcs
 

Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby arsaib4 » Mon Mar 17, 2008 4:19 am

hengcs wrote: (1) the awards
My point of the award is: given that it is the most recognized in thailand, and there is tough competition from Love of Siam (which rightfully deserves the Best Film and Best Director award) etc,


Was Apichatpong Weerasethakul's Syndromes and a Century nominated for any of the local awards?! After battling the authorities for nearly a year, Apichatpong has finally accepted to "black out" a few scenes in his innocuous little film, just so it could be shown in his native country. So you see, hengcs, outsiders often present a better perspective on things.
arsaib4
 

Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby hengcs » Mon Mar 17, 2008 4:25 am



i know what you mean, but let me articulate a few rather different scenarios/examples ...
e.g.

(1) a swedish friend once told me (not sure how true it is) -- that the rest of the world likes Ingmar Bergman's works much more than many of the swedish themselves. maybe sometimes the world has a diff taste from the locals?! ... whose taste is "correct"?! just like food, i dont think there is a right and wrong, but the recognition that tastes do differ ...

(2) a lot of critics love Tsai Ming Liang's work, but you cannot deny that among the chinese population (i.e., from china, taiwan, hongkong, singapore, etc), only a substantial number like his works, i often called it an acquired taste ... it is too cryptic at times for commercial success ...

(3) now back to Syndromes and a Century ... very humbly, i think it deserves a technical nomination at least for its style ... now i recall the controversy, it has to do with the depiction of monks, religion, etc ...

as for it being the "best film", it dep on the yardstick we are using ... frankly, i wonder if the average thais (as in the normal citizens, NOT necessary people from the film association) do like these artsy fartsy films (that boast of more style than "plot") ... i want to discuss more about his works ... so click ... http://foreignfilms.yuku.com/topic/1336
hengcs
 

Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby arsaib4 » Mon Mar 17, 2008 11:02 pm

"(3) now back to Syndromes and a Century ... very humbly, i think it deserves a technical nomination at least for its style ... now i recall the controversy, it has to do with the depiction of monks, religion, etc ... "

Apichatpong and his producers tried to argue that violent and disrespectful films are approved every week for mass consumption. The committee claimed that the film depicted Thai society in a bad light and has no artistic merit (which is laughable to say the least). Incidentally, the scene in which a monk plays a guitar was deemed to be okay. The kissing scene between the doctor and his girlfriend wasn't, and neither was the one in which a group of medical professionals share some whiskey. It goes deeper, I think. Apichatpong's sexual orientation has been an issue for a while now, and it seems to me that attempts are made to humiliate him at every turn.
arsaib4
 

Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby hengcs » Tue Mar 18, 2008 2:06 am

arsaib4 wrote: It goes deeper, I think. Apichatpong's sexual orientation has been an issue for a while now, and it seems to me that attempts are made to humiliate him at every turn.

I am not sure what happens.

But very humbly, I think the Thais are pretty open to different sexual orientation.Even for the film awards, 2 of the films that got a lot of nominations did win and they were loosely classified as gay films even though they dealt with bigger issues ...
click
http://www.nationmultimedia.com/2008/02/02/entertainment/entertainment_30064182.php

(i) Love Of Siam - 13 nominations, finally 3 wins (Best Picture, Director, Sup Actress)
(ii) Bangkok Love Story - 8 nominations, finally 3 wins (Best Cinematography, Sound, Screenplay)

So, I am not sure what exactly happens btw the director and the authority.
hengcs
 

Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby arsaib4 » Tue Mar 18, 2008 2:32 am

Yes, my comment specifically referred to him and his situation. I'm not interested in the sort of films that won the awards.
arsaib4
 

Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby hengcs » Tue Mar 18, 2008 2:38 am

arsaib4 wrote: Yes, my comment specifically referred to him and his situation. I'm not interested in the sort of films that won the awards.

guess we need some insider's news or some published info ...
hengcs
 

Re: Bangkok Love Story (2007) (Thailand)

Postby hengcs » Tue Mar 18, 2008 4:10 am



since arsaib4 brought up the issue of censorship for Syndromes and A Century ...

here is some info i found on the web ...
click
Apichatpong gives up, film cut further-Wise Kwai
hengcs
 

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