Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Skytrain of love is coming in Bangkok Traffic Love Story

In the 10 years since Bangkok's skytrain has become a landmark of the city, it's been featured in several films -- whizzing by as two guys make love on a rooftop in Bangkok Love Story, or being a mode of transport rated just slightly better than a crowded city bus for a rash-prone young woman in Citizen Dog -- are just a couple that come to mind.

Now the BTS (Bangkok Mass Transit System) is a focal point and conveyance for lovers who meet cute in the GTH romantic comedy BTS: Bangkok Traffic (Love) Story.The Thai title is Rot Fai Faa ... Maa Haa Na Ter (รถไฟฟ้า...มาหานะเธอ) or "I rode a skytrain to see you." Aww.

After seeing the trailer (embedded below) a few times, I guess it might be okay as far as romantic comedies go.

Cris Horwang, last seen in the rather bizarre role of a young hilltribe woman in Nose Udom's uneven comedy E-Tim Tay Nai, seems more suitably and appealingly cast here. The button-nosed 28-year-old plays a 30-something single Chinese-Thai woman, living with her mother and on the verge of spinsterhood. She sees her chance for love when she meets a guy who works as a railway engineer on the Skytrain. He's played by soap-opera heartthrob Ken Teeradej.

She has to compete with a teenaged rival ("Pattie" Ungsumarin Sirapatsakmetha) to get the guy's attention. "Opal" Panisara Pimpu is cast as Cris' supportive best friend.

It's directed by Adisorn Tresirikasem, one of the "Fan Chan six" who last made the soccer comedy Mak Tae (Lucky Loser). From the rural comedy of the Laotian-set and then not-Laotian-set sports comedy, Adisorn moves solidly into GTH's comfort zone of middle-class Bangkokian romance.

But the movie does have an interesting pedigree. The script has been in the works for two years, and among the writers is indie filmmaker Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit, who explained the writing process on his blog.

The script has been changed a hundred of times and it can't be said who is the scriptwriter No. 1, 2, 3 or 4 because we are sharing ideas together so much that I don't know who is the owner of the ideas in each part. But it doesn't matter. I don't care whether the film will be brilliant or just a crap. It's happy for me to experience the character on the paper moving on the big screen with the mainstream audience for the first time.

Bangkok Traffic (Love) Story opens in Thai cinemas on Thursday.

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  1. Interesting -- the title is a pun on the formal name of the subway.

    รถไฟฟ้ามาหานะเธอ rot fai fa ma ha na ther = the title.

    รถไฟฟ้ามหานคร rot fai fa maha nakhon = MRTA, literally, "metropolitan electric train"

    The pun works because รถไฟฟ้า rot fai fa (electric train) is the root of the names of both the skytrain and subway, but it's also the common informal name of the skytrain.

    Language is fun.

  2. In my humble opinion this was a really entertaining romantic comedy. I saw it several times at the movies with English subtitles and bought the DVD (without subtitles unfortunately!) The writing was clever with parts of the story having more than one purpose (ie the soap opera). The actress who played Mai Li presented an adorable character. It was simply a wonderful performance!


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