Wednesday, April 2, 2008
Dynamite Warrior, Dorm at Amsterdam Fantastic Film Festival
Wait. What year is this? A couple of the best Thai films of 2006, spooky Dorm and the fun Dynamite Warrior are getting a fresh airing at the Amsterdam Fantastic Film Festival, which runs from April 3 to 20.
The first solo outing by Fan Chan director Songyos Sugmakanan, Dorm stars Charlie Trairat as a boy who is packed off to a creepy boarding school by his father. The reasons for this are mysterious, as are the reasons the boarding school is mysterious. This being a GMM-Tai-Hub film, they couldn't end it on a down note, but everything up until the end is about pitch perfect, including the performance by Jintara Sukapat. Charlie and his co-star from Dorm, Michael Sirachuch Chienthaworn, currently star in Songyos' smash-hit romantic comedy-drama Hormones.
Dynamite Warrior was one of my favorite films of 2006. A western set on the Isaan plateau in early 1900s Thailand, it stars Dan Chupong as a young buffalo rustler who rides homemade rockets and uses knee kicks to defeat his foes. Muay Thai, black magic, explosions, herds of water buffalo and the menstrual blood of a virgin mix into a fun cocktail. Stunt choreographer Panna Rittikrai co-stars as an evil warlock.
Both Dorm and Dynamite Warrior are available on English-subtitled DVD, but they are both worth seeing on the big screen in the cinema, so if you're near Amsterdam, put them on your of things to see.
Also of interest in Amsterdam: Takashi Miike's western, Sukiyaki Western Django (tentatively scheduled to play in Bangkok in the coming months), Shinya Tsukamoto's Nightmare Detective and Machine Girl.