Wednesday, November 18, 2009

As the world crumbles, Bangkok Traffic (Love) Story sets a record

Bangkok Traffic (Love) Story's four-week hold on the top spot of the Thai box office was broken over the weekend by the Hollywood disaster flick 2012, which had lines of people snaking through the lobby of the giant Paragon Cineplex.

As the thunderous sound effects of Roland Emmerich's latest Earth-destroying epic resonated throughout multiplexes and disrupted quieter films, BT(L)S had bosses at studio GTH celebrating -- the winsome romance with the Thai title Rot Fai Faa ... Maha Na Ter earned more than 140 million baht, topping the studio's previous biggest box-office smash, 2003's Fan Chan.

According to Nangdee, Bangkok Traffic (Love) Story was still in second place at the Thai box office and earned a total of 144.7 million baht.

The previous week, BT(L)S had been No. 1, topping Michael Jackson's This Is It, which has had a weak showing in Thailand compared to the rest of the world.

Sahamongkol's ghost-story omnibus Maha'lai Sayong Kwan (Haunted Universities) was out of the Top 5 this past weekend. Previously it had been at No. 4.

Other Thai films playing include Sahamongkol's action-heroine vehicle Suay ... Samurai (Vanquisher), which was released on November 5 and didn't crack the top five. It's largely been pushed out of central Bangkok's flagship multiplexes but can still be found in a few scattered screenings in places like EGV Metropolis, Century the Movie Plaza and perhaps the UMG RCA.

Also performing poorly here was Five Star's blood-soaked serial-killer thriller Slice (Cheuan), which only cracked the top 5 but will probably get a better reception from festival audiences next year. If not already, Slice will soon be playing in the second-class theaters -- perfect places to see that one.

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