Thursday, July 19, 2012

P-047 opens in limited Thai release

Having toured the festival circuit for the past year or so, Kongej Jaturanrasmee's trippy psychological drama P-047 (Tae Peang Phu Deaw, แต่เพียงผู้เดียว) returns to Thailand this week for a limited theatrical release.

Opening today, it's the first indie production for Kongdej, a film-industry veteran as both a writer-director (Sayew, Midnight My Love, Handle Me with Care) and hired-gun screenwriter (Me ... Myself, Tom-Yum-Goong, Happy Birthday).

In a look at the meanings of identity and personality, P-047 is the story of a lonely locksmith (musician Apichai Tragoolpadetgrai) who joins up with an aspiring writer (Parinya Ngamwongwan) to break into other people's homes – not to steal anything but just to temporarily "borrow" the lives of others. But things go off the rails when they pry too deeply into someone else's life.

P-047 premiered last year at the Venice fest, where it was a last-minute addition to the out-of-competition program. Other appearances have included Busan, Palm Springs, Singapore, Osaka, Hong Kong and Los Angeles.

At last month's LA Film Fest, the Awards Circuit's Joseph Braverman had this to say about P-047:

The last movie I saw was disjunctive, confusing, yet eerily fascinating. Director Kongdej Jaturanrasamee’s P-047 really reminded me of a Wong Kar-wai film. Nothing made sense, the story was fragmented into bits, and things you may think are real actually might not be. I’ll need to take a second look at this film to really piece together everything, but right now I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place trying to decide if I liked the movie or not. I guess you’ll find out in my review, but it was difficult to turn away from this Thai-based foreign language film. The acting is incredibly strong, although the characters don’t always behave like what they initially portray themselves to be the further along the film progress, but I assume that’s intentionally so. If you thought Prometheus was confusing, then P-047 may just leave you forever stumped. If you find the thread that connects each piece or unearth the hidden meanings behind every scene and piece of dialogue, then I proclaim you a genius. P-047 both baffles and stimulates, but Kongdej Jaturanrasamee has a ways to go before he can contend with Wong Kar-wai, although this was a valiant attempt.

I too welcome a second chance to see P-047, having seen it only once so far at the 9th World Film Festival of Bangkok earlier this year.

In Bangkok, it'll be screening at the Lido in Siam Square and at the Esplanade Cineplex Ratchadaphisek and in Chiang Mai at the Major Cineplex.

The trailer is embedded below.

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