Thursday, October 29, 2009

Gays, a transgender ghost and a giant snake

Three Thai films are opening this week in Bangkok cinemas, and none of them are from the major studios.

Probably the most promising of the three is the purely indie feature, Seng Ped (เซ็งเป็ด, Boring Love, by writer-director Sarawut Intaraprom. He previously did the indie animated feature Boyfriend, which had a limited run in Bangkok in 2007.

Boyfriend was developed from a webcomic that ran on the popular forum, and Boring Love is adapted from a novel that was serialized on Pantip.

It's about a love triangle that develops when when Kai (Intira Kateworrasoonthorn) dumps her boyfriend Ped (Nattaphon Nilphoom) for a new guy. She then discovers that Ped has fallen in love with her new sweetheart Ooy (Athiwat Lumgool) and the three of them shack up together.

Boring Love is in limited release in Bangkok at the Lido cinemas. There are no English subtitles. The trailer is on YouTube and it's embedded here.

In a wider release is Ja-Ae ... Goi Laew Jaa (จ๊ะเอ๋... โกยแล้วจ้า) from Five Four Three Two Action Film, which released the martial-arts drama Ha Teaw last year. They're back with this ghost comedy romance starring "Poy" Treechada Marnyaporn, who is probably best known as the winner of the 2004 Miss Tiffany Universe pageant -- a pageant for transgender competitors. This year's pageant, now called Miss International Queen takes place on Saturday.

Poy, seeking to be taken seriously as an actress, portrays a young woman who commits suicide and returns as a ghost, waiting for her boyfriend to come back to the village. She scares off all the villagers and when her fella returns he doesn't realize she is a ghost, until she tries to persuade him to commit suicide to be with her forever.

Along with Poy, there's the usual cast of comedians like Somlek Sakdikul and Kom Chanchuen to liven things up. There's a trailer for this one too.

It's directed by Nati Phunmanee, who previously helmed the 2006 crime comedy Zapp.

Also in wide release is The Scout (Bit Pi-Pop Ta-Lu Lohk, บิดพิภพทะลุโลก). Produced by Logo Motion Picture, it's a children's adventure film by Pleo Sirisuwan. He previously directed 2006's Vengeance (recently reviewed by Peter Nellhaus) and like Vengeance The Scout has a giant snake.

I think possibly this venom-slobbering super king cobra is too prominent in the trailer (embedded here) and on the posters, because once you let a giant CGI snake loose, where else can you go? But Pleo must be confident in his his kid actors and their work in front of the green screen as well as his CGI creations, which aren't bad. There are other critters too, like sharp toothed toads with bat wings. Yikes!

The story is about schoolchildren on a scouting field trip, who stumble on an old temple where things are not as serene as they seem. The Scout was initially promoted for release on October 15, but it's out today.

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