Saturday, January 1, 2011

Apichatpong-a-rama: Boonmee in Singapore and Japan, more lists and on the radio

Apichatpong Weerasethakul and his Palme d'Or winner Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives head into 2011 with theatrical releases in Singapore and Japan.

Uncle Boonmee opens in Singapore on January 27, for an exclusive run at the Cathay Cineplex's Picturehouse.

Passed without cuts by the Singaporean censors, the movie is rated PG. It's distributed in Singapore by Lighthouse Pictures.

Singapore will also have a charity screening of Uncle Boonmee on January 15, to benefit the Asian Film Archive, with Apichatpong there to introduce the screening and answer questions afterward.

In Japan, Uncle Boonmee opens in March. There's a a website and a downloadable trailer.

Or you can watch the Japanese trailer for Uncle Boonmee on YouTube and right here. It's a cool trailer, which makes interesting use of the Penguin Villa music from the closing credits and causes me to wonder about the many different ways Boonmee can be remixed and mashed. For example, what if Boonmee were being sold as a romantic comedy, or as an action movie?

As a reminder, Uncle Boonmee is due for its theatrical and DVD debuts in the U.S. by Strand Releasing this spring.

It's already on DVD in some territories. And that leads to other things, unfortunately.

But I would urge you, if you really want to see Uncle Boonmee, just wait a bit, and look for it at a cinema near you.

Boonmee on the radio:

  • Apichatpong's interview with CBC's Eleanor Wachtel is available for download from the CBC website. It was recorded back during the Toronto International Film Festival and covers just about everything, from Joei's upbringing in small-town Khon Kaen, his time at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, his first film Mysterious Object at Noon, his sexuality, the dark, angry undercurrent of Tropical Malady and life for Apichatpong post-Palme d'Or.
  • Wachtel also spoke with Cinematheque Ontario senior programmer James Quandt, the editor of the Apichatpong "pink book". He offers a critique of the criticism about Apichatpong, saying words like "hallucinatory" or "dreamlike" are a cop-out when it comes to describing Apichatpong's films. "He's a much more structured and controlling director than he's been given credit for," Quandt says.

Year-end lists:

Finally, just in case you missed it, Lekha Shankar wrote recently about Apichatpong and Boonmee at the film festivals in Kerala and Goa in India.

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