Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Review: That Sounds Good (Rao Song Sam Khon)

  • Directed by Leo Kittikorn
  • Starring Montonn Jira, Ramita Mahapreukpong and Rattanrat Eertaweekul
  • Released in Thai cinemas on June 24, 2010; rated 13+
  • Rating: 3/5

What's essentially an extended music video, the road-trip romantic comedy That Sounds Good (เรา สองสาม คน, Rao Song Sam Khon) looks good, with its stunning backdrops of Vietnamese tourism hotspots. And, it sure sounds good with its rousing Thai rock and pop soundtrack. But it's underpowered when it comes to substance.

Musician "Jay" Montonn Jira stars as Somchu, the good-natured driver of a four-wheel-drive rig on an Indochinese road rally, honking and grinding their way through the Central Highlands.

Along for the ride are two young women, Ter and Soontri (Ramita Mahapreukpong and Rattanrat Eertaweekul). Ter wears a pair of thick Harry Potter-style eyeglasses that keeps her in a perpetual state of ab baew (cute pose) while her friend Soontri has impaired hearing and wears hearing aids.

Soontri takes the shotgun seat. She dramatically lifts a ski mask off her face and introduces herself to Somchu, who is immediately captivated by her.

She likes him too, but even under the best of circumstances, people will have difficulty clearly expressing their thoughts to each other. Throw in hearing problems, poor eyesight and general thick-headededness, and well, then there are real troubles.

In the confines of their vintage orange Suzuki Caribbean the three get to know each other, sharing easy-going, good-natured banter.

Soontri explains that she can read lips and can understand what people are saying if they look directly at her and speak clearly. Until she locks on people's speech patterns, she perceives their voices as if they have inhaled helium. Sounds pretty funny.

A drunken night out by glasses girl, and a walk down a dark alley by her and the driver sparks friction between the two women.

The girls go wandering off alone, taking lonely walks over the sands of the deserts of Mui Ne. "Oh, they're in a music video," says somebody at the campfire.

It really is a music video.

And that's about all there is to it.

She likes him. He likes her. And so they spend the rest of the movie bumbling around trying to come out and tell that to each other.

Just like the trip they are on, they are driving in circles, not really going anywhere.

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