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  • News & article

    Close your eyes

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 13/09/2017

    » In June 13, 1981, Issei Sagawa, 32, was arrested after he was seen dumping two suspicious suitcases in the Seine. A student of comparative literature at Sorbonne, the Japanese man two days earlier had killed his Dutch classmate, raped her corpse, stored her body in his fridge and ate morsels after morsels of her flesh to stimulate his sexual desire. Only when the smell became unbearable did he pack what remained in the suitcases and threw them into the river. The French court declared Sagawa legally insane and released him. He returned to Japan, wrote a comic book about his world-famous case, became a food critic (no kidding), and starred in pornographic films. Today Sagawa, old and paralytic, still lives in a suburb of Tokyo.

  • News & article

    A look at prison muay Thai

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 24/05/2017

    » Thailand is splashed across the main screen of the Cannes Film Festival this year. A Prayer Before Dawn is not a Thai film, but this UK-France production takes place entirely in Thailand -- precisely in the rancid, violence-prone prison where inmates are crammed into small dormitories and fight to stay alive. Based on a book by ex-convict William Moore, who spent years at Klong Prem Prison for selling ya ba, the film, directed by Jean-Stephane Sauvaire, is an intense look at hard life in the hellhole, before Moore (played by British actor Joe Cole) finds redemption in the prison's muay Thai boxing programme.

  • News & article

    Time is not on our side

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 25/01/2018

    » This is a note on an important Thai film that is unlikely to be shown in Thailand. Such is the fate of home-grown cinema in a time of disease, the time of a black hole.

  • News & article

    On unhappy women and clumsy hitmen

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 19/01/2018

    » Pen-ek Ratanaruang's movies -- eight of them in the past 20 years and the ninth slated for a Feb 1 release -- are often inhabited by unhappy women and clumsy hitmen. Unhappy, yet those women are neither resigned nor passive. Clumsy, yet those hitmen have aspirations, dreams and worries like people in other respectable professions. A genre geek, Pen-ek likes crime thrillers, but one of Thailand's best-known directors is also a diligent investigator of human relationships and man-woman dynamics, their eccentric and mysterious rapport and misunderstandings that determine the course of the world, and of cinema.

  • News & article

    A battle worth fighting

    Life, Kanin Srimaneekulroj, Published on 19/01/2018

    » Towards the end of 12 Strong -- the new Jerry Bruckheimer-produced war movie that hit Thai theatres this week -- there is a scene featuring protagonist Captain Mitch Nelson (Chris Hemsworth), in full US army war-gear, leading a charging column of Afghan freedom-fighters on horseback into a Taliban gunline, complete with tanks and missile-launchers. In true Hollywood super-soldier fashion, the captain picks off jihadists left and right while holding his assault rifle one-handed, sprinting his horse headfirst into a flurry of scything machine-gun rounds. He comes out the other side unscathed of course, thanks to his prodigious plot armour, and proceeds to save the day as scores of freedom fighters are cut down all around him.

  • News & article

    Captain Thailand?

    Life, Published on 07/10/2016

    » Thanks to the success of their superhero film franchise, beginning with Iron Man in 2008, Marvel has elevated itself from a well-known comic book publisher to a global entertainment icon, setting new standards for superhero films that no competing brands have yet to successfully imitate.

  • News & article

    For the days that remain

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 17/11/2017

    » Challenging taboos, one of Thailand's most popular directors returns with a film that looks death in the eye

  • News & article

    Animation Coco tops box office again

    Life, Published on 12/12/2017

    » The animated family film Coco has topped the box office for a third time on a quiet, pre Star Wars: The Last Jedi weekend in cinemas. Disney estimated on Sunday that Coco added US$18.3 million (596 million baht), which would bring its domestic total to $135.5 million.

  • News & article

    Oscar contenders from around the world

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 10/11/2017

    » A record 92 films have been submitted to the Oscar Foreign Language Film category. We take a look at some

  • News & article

    With a promise of fun, Suicide Squad is a near-suicide

    Life, Kanin Srimaneekulroj, Published on 05/08/2016

    » For the first 30 minutes or so of its two-hour duration, Suicide Squad genuinely reminded me of the zany, outlandish humour of Marvel's Deadpool and Guardians Of The Galaxy, even if, ultimately, this one is not remotely as good. With zany, self-aware text introductions, a largely 80s-inspired soundtrack, excellent costume designs and enough one-liners to fill a book, Suicide Squad's first act was a fun, neon-splashed ride that made me believe DC's supervillain team-up would -- ironically -- be the comic label's first good film. This all dissolves by the second act, however, as the film begins to disintegrate into predictable, by-the-numbers story complete, with all the pitfalls that held back its predecessors, becoming yet another mediocre entry in DC's cinematic franchise.

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