I had a pair of tickets to each film to give away to the first readers who e-mailed me. Congratulations to Danni, who wanted to see Gangster, and Sisouvanh, who got the tickets to Countdown.
Countdown shows on July 3 at 10.20pm and Gangster is on July 4 at 8.15, both at the Walter Reade Theater at Lincoln Center.
Directed by Nattawut Poonpiriya, Countdown is feature-length remake of a short the director did as a student in New York. It won numerous awards in Thailand this year, especially for the performance by David Asavanond. Here's the festival synopsis for Countdown:
An acclaimed Thai horror movie about three Thai hipsters in New York City who make a big mistake when they call an evil American drug dealer named Jesus to provide their needs for a New Year’s Eve party. Along with the drugs, Jesus supplies a psychological game involving violence and torture as the clock counts down to the New Year.
Gangster, directed Kongkiat Khomsiri, is spun from another thread of the stories of Dang Bireley's young gangsters who ran Bangkok's underworld in the 1950s and '60s. It features a smoldering performance by Krissada Sukosol Clapp as the old-school gangster Jod. Here's the festival synopsis:
Thailand’s answer to Goodfellas, Gangster is a fact-based tale with documentary segments in which old-timers are interviewed and talk about the young gangsters of 1950s and ’60s Thailand. The film focuses on Jod, a gangster who has been sent to jail following the military coup, which brings new order to the streets. In their neighborhood, a uniformed officer named Neung rules like a dictator and is a frequent thorn in the side of Jod’s gang. When he emerges from prison, Jod is a changed man, now determined to set things right. But, knowing no other life, he returns to his old gangster ways with his old crew.
The 12th New York Asian Film Festival runs from June 28 to July 15.