There are filmmakers who return to their childhood for beautiful atmospheric films, but the imaginative Thai master Apichatpong Weerasethakul returns to the time before his parents found each other. Yet his childhood is also evoked in two parts. A sunny part for his mother and a cool and occasionally bizarre part for his father.
Apichatpong Weerasethakul, a master in promoting modern film forms and mythical fantasies, shows in his latest film that he is also good at telling stories using different spaces. Alongside two protagonists the film also has two main locations. The first part of the film is set during the film maker's childhood that he remembers as ideal, even though the protagonist is modelled on his mother as she was before he was born. The protagonist in the second part is inspired by the film maker's father. But basically the story is, as said, told more through the locations than the characters. First there is the pleasant, sunny and verdant hospital of the female psychiatrist Toey (the later mother). Before that, Weerasethakul returned to the surroundings of his (early) childhood in Khon Kaen, a town in northeastern Thailand closer to the countryside of Laos than to Bangkok, and allowed the pastoral surroundings to shape the tone of these almost jovial sketches. In the second part, the film shifts considerably in time and space to a bleak present-day hospital in Bangkok. The surroundings do not just change the look of the film: the whole tone and approach become alienating. Within the special logic of Weerasethakul, it is therefore no surprise that the film ends beyond the present in a pretty scary vision of the future. (GjZ. IFFR, Holland)
Thailand, France, Austria, 2006
Kick the Machine, Tifa Co. Ltd, Anna Sanders Films, New Crowned Hope
Nantarat Sawaddikul, Jaruchai Iamaram, Sophon Pukanok, Jenjira Pongpas, Arkanea Cherkam, Nu Nimsomboon, Sakda Kaewbuadee
Koichi Shimizu, Akritchalerm Kalayanamitr
FESTIVALS / PRIX / AWARDS / TELEVISIONS
IFFR Rotterdam, Hollande, 2007