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  • LIFE

    A baroque nightmare, upgraded

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 02/11/2018

    » The original 1977 Suspiria was a trashy bloodbath, an Italian giallo at its most lurid and disturbing -- a lair of maggots, murderers and witches. The remake, in cinemas this week, is high-trash Euro art house, more bourgeois and hipsterish -- a baroque nightmare whose danse macabre has been upgraded to fit the faces and forms of Dakota Johnson and Tilda Swinton. The new film has been directed by Italian Luca Guadagnino (Call Me By Your Name, A Bigger Splash, I Am Love) and shot by Thai cinematographer Sayombhu Mukdeeprom, whose 35mm work here is one of the film's high points.

  • LIFE

    A hint of political maturation

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 25/09/2018

    » The Bangkok Art and Culture Centre has been put under bureaucratic pressure, its budget cut and its relations with Bangkok Metropolitan Authority strained. One way to support this hub of contemporary art in downtown Bangkok is simple: visit the place, admire the art and the events, and show that the city needs a modern, open-minded art and culture venue unshackled by the old guard.

  • LIFE

    House RCA retrospective honours Japanese Palme d'Or winner

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 27/07/2018

    » Hirokazu Kore-eda's Shoplifters will open in Thailand on Aug 2, two months after the film won the Palme d'Or at Cannes Film Festival. Among modern Japanese filmmakers, Kore-eda has amassed the strongest following in Thailand, largely due to the fortunate fact that most of his films -- not all, mind you -- have opened commercially here since 2004. To pave the mood for Shoplifters, a gem of a family drama that finally brought the 56-year-old director one of the highest honours in international cinema, the Thai distribution Mongkol Major brings back seven films by the master in a Kore-eda Retrospective programme at House RCA, starting today.

  • OPINION

    Religious fervour serves no god well

    News, Kong Rithdee, Published on 07/04/2018

    » Aformer rock musician has embraced the role of online preacher and denounced, above other things, rock music. In fact, he objects to most kinds of music, deeming it against Islam. Weerachon "Toh" Sattaying, once the high-pitched frontman of the band Silly Fools (love the name), has over the past six years quit his former lifestyle and became a born-again Muslim. Bearded, skull-capped, fiery-eyed and charismatic, Weerachon runs a dry-aged beef business and hosts an online religious programme that has cultivated quite a following.

  • THAILAND

    Last light at Lido

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 04/05/2018

    » The Lido Theatre opened on June 27, 1968, a 1,000-seat movie palace in the fast-modernising neighbourhood of Pathumwan. The first title on the marquee was Guns For San Sebastian, a cowboy film starring Anthony Quinn.

  • LIFE

    Dissecting a nation

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 19/06/2017

    » Pasuk Phongpaichit's and Chris Baker's house is a verdant abode at the end of a maze in an Ekamai sub-soi. The garden at the back has tall trees and a small, tea-coloured pond. The whole area used to be a swamp, said Baker. The couple, both highly respected scholars in Thai studies, have been living there since 1987, or in their lexicon, "just before the boom" -- the high-flying economic expansion whose seismic shifts forever transformed Thailand in the early 1990s. Had they wanted to purchase the plot slightly later than they actually did -- after the boom had set in -- they wouldn't have been able to. "We came just before the high-rises."

  • LIFE

    At Cannes, humour makes a surprise visit

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 01/02/2017

    » Humour is hardly ever associated with Cannes competition films -- to win the Palme d'Or, for example, it's assumed a film should possess art house gravitas, serious humanity, or weighty, topical, discourse-stimulating subject matter (last year's winner, Dheepan, is about immigrants in Paris, and before that, the three-hour-long Turkish drama Winter Sleep).

  • LIFE

    Our best films of the year

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 22/12/2016

    » As usual we have two lists, for titles released in local cinemas and the wider universe of world films shown elsewhere (and hopefully coming to our screens soon).

  • LIFE

    The non-Hollywood contenders

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 09/12/2016

    » Thailand has submitted the monk drama Arpatti to compete with 84 other countries in the Oscar race for best foreign-language film. Here we look at some highlights from around the world before the nominations are announced on Jan 24.

  • THAILAND

    Moments of record

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 07/10/2016

    » The film fades and has scratches, but the persistence of history is strong. On Tuesday, the Ministry of Culture and Thai Film Archive (Public Organisation) registered 25 film items into the National Heritage list for audiovisual conservation and future reference. In November and December, the Archive will host screenings of some of the newly inducted titles.

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