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  • LIFE

    Once upon a time on the French Riviera

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 14/05/2019

    » The spectacle ahead will -- hopefully (cinema sages are an optimistic bunch) -- be spectacular. The 72nd Cannes Film Festival opens tonight and there are all manner of curiosities to look forward to: an army of hipster zombies; Margot Robbie as Sharon Tate; Korean parasites; a Maradona doc; an Elton John biopic; Islamic extremism in Belgium; British miserabilism (Brexit and other demons); and, of course, Elle Fanning on the red carpet for 11 days straight, performing jury duty at the world's most reported, most hyped and most influential film festival.

  • LIFE

    Diving into the cave

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 09/01/2019

    » Of all the films scheduled to come out in 2019, one will return Thailand to the headlines. Various projects based on last year's dramatic rescue of the 12 Wild Boars footballers and their coach have been touted, and now a Thai film has completed principle photography and is going through post-production.

  • LIFE

    In the eye of the storm

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 30/09/2016

    » The photograph is brutal because the reality is brutal.

  • LIFE

    The American dream gone sour

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 19/02/2016

    » More than other countries, the “idea” of America is greater than America itself, as Dr Bennet Omalu finds out. Omalu is a Nigerian pathologist working in Pittsburgh as he waits to be naturalised, and as played by Will Smith, he’s a specimen of a noble, intelligent, optimistic soul who can’t stand dishonesty and injustice. In short, his principles are more American than those of most Americans themselves. That shouldn’t be a problem, until he performs an autopsy on an American football legend and finds that the great American sport has ruined its players beyond repair, driving some of them into suicidal insanity.

  • LIFE

    Cinematic gems in competition

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 04/01/2015

    » The deadline is Oct 1, but more than 40 countries have already submitted their entries for the foreign-language film category at next year’s Academy Awards. Earlier this week, Thailand announced that its representative at the 2015 Oscars would be hit romantic comedy Kid Tueng Wittaya (Teacher’s Diary). The film, which focuses on two teachers and the indirect courtship they conduct via messages written in a diary hidden on a houseboat, was released earlier this year to a mixed critical reception but local box-office success. Life wishes its director, Nitiwat Tharatorn, the best of luck.

  • LIFE

    Industrialisation of Young Hope

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 04/04/2014

    » No wonder this was a mainland hit. Peter Chan’s American Dreams In China is a rags-to-riches story that shows how the underdog Chinese beat the Americans at their own game — first through the industrialisation of dreams, then through free market capitalism. Luck, bumps, over-ambition and shattered friendships are necessary mixes along the path, but at the end the message is as clear as the surface of a Jiuzhaigou lake — while aspiring Chinese of the 1980s looked up to the US as the beacon of wealth and economic wonder, today it’s China Inc — its riches, its values, its bombast and its never-give-up defiance that shame the falling-from-grace Americans.

  • LIFE

    Mental stability not required

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 22/02/2013

    » Whip Whitaker is flying high, literally. In his stirring, head-first performance in a movie about a nose-diving aircraft and its drug-addled pilot, Denzel Washington plays a wreck looking for a break in the clouds and, naturally, for salvation _ moral, legal, professional.

  • LIFE

    Lao new wave

    Life, Kong Rithdee, Published on 18/04/2012

    » For decades, the light has been out in Laos. The movie screens have become totally dark, and the profession known elsewhere as "actor" is, up to today, still non-existent. For so many years our land-locked neighbour has subsisted on a staple of Thai TV soaps and movies, cultural imports that have travelled, or been smuggled, through airwaves and distribution channels, and so much is our cross-Mekong dominance that Lao people have almost forgotten what it's like to watch a Lao film.

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