Monday, May 12, 2008
Ploy, Wonderful Town, Meteorites in Seattle
Two Thai romantic dramas, Pen-ek Ratanaruang's Ploy and Aditya Assarat's Wonderful Town, will be featured at this year's Seattle International Film Festival, which runs from May 22 to June 15. Both films are in the Contemporary World Cinema program.
A third Thai film, Apichatpong Weerasethakul's Meteorites, is featured as part of a short-film package, The Past and the Present. Meteorites was part of the Short Films Project in Commemoration of the Celebration on the Auspicious Occasion of His Majesty the King's 80th Birthday Anniversary.
Ploy premiered in the Directors' Fortnight at last year's Cannes Film Festival. When it came to Thailand for its commercial run, Pen-ek had to re-edit it for censors, to remove some sexually explicit scenes, but he kept the film the same length by adding in some other footage. It's the elusive "erect nipples" version that has yet to be issued on DVD, but that's the version that is likely playing in Seattle. I really liked Ploy, a tense drama about a jet-lagged couple in a Bangkok hotel room, reviewing their seven years of marriage. Hopefully, after a few more festivals, someone will release the original version of Ploy on DVD.
Wonderful Town, meanwhile, has been burning up the festival circuit for the past year. It opens in a limited commercial release in Bangkok this week, and I have a review forthcoming.