Well, this film by “Joe” Apitchapong seems to be universally admired. It’s the only film I can think of that has received a 5/5 from every single one of my friends at this site. That still amounts to only 8 votes, but still it’s unprecedented. I was just curious as to what it is about this film that people like (or dislike). Here’s my “review” for what it’s worth.
This is cinema stripped down to its most primitive and elemental form a la the projected shadow shows in Plato’s allegory of the cave. Civilization, represented by the ball of fire with which the young men play a game of soccer, brings destruction to the pure dream that is cinema, burning down the tabura rasa of a screen. FUCKING GENIUS. The best thing to have come out of Thailand since pad thai and women who shoot ping pong balls out of their vaginas.
THIS I have to see. Link?
Note: I’m talking about the film, not the oddly sportsy females.
Ryan – Phantoms. Thank Carlo for the link.
It’s an extremely complex work. It may actually be my favourite film by him which saying quite a bit since the three other features I’ve seen from him have been three of the greatest works I’ve ever seen. It’s one of the few shorts, and films in general, in which everything hearkens to something deeper. Everything has meaning. Even the location is a place of political significance. I am just endlessly amazed by this man. I have never been disappointed by him.
Not sure if it’s a deep meditation on civilization or a bit of a gimmick with striking images. A beautiful film, regardless. I’m going to think about it.
The first time I saw it, I was stuck in deep nostalgia, drowned by memories from my own teens – home town with flickering incandescent lights all over, deserted streets past midnight, balls of fire, the festival of lights, roaming around in the streets to start little bonfires. Then the wonderful imagery stayed with me long after I was done watching it. There could be deeper meanings in what Weerasethakul actually depicted but its striking dazzling imagery i what I appreciate most for now. Marvellous.
I had goosebumps from the opening shot of the lamp against the dark sky and palm tree in the wind. It’s the kind of film that affects you differently and more deeply with each viewing. Despite how visually stunning it is, I was most struck by the sounds. What a beautiful film.
“This is cinema stripped down to its most primitive and elemental form a la the projected shadow shows in Plato’s allegory of the cave. Civilization, represented by the ball of fire with which the young men play a game of soccer, brings destruction to the pure dream that is cinema, burning down the tabura rasa of a screen.”
Utterly brilliant. Strikingly beautiful too.
I agree with everything said. Perhaps my favorite film of the year so far.
Yeah, as much as I hate to be just another rider on the bandwagon, that is one beautiful piece of film. (Actually, I have no problem at all being on the ApWeewagon since it’s one of the best around.)
I should amend my original post to say that the fire, represented by the soccer ball, of course, is not only a destructive force. It is the force behind creativity as well. The fiery ball as visual art, music, narrative, and so on…
I wish I could read some opinions of people who didn’t care for the film as well…
I find this to be slightly less accessible than his other shorts (A Letter to Uncle Boonmee, Mobile Men)
I understand what Blue K says, but im not sure about why he chose Nabua
I think its location is much more important in A Letter to Uncle Boonmee
but im not sure what it all means…just a little puzzled =/
some help would be nice :)
Uh-oh here I’m about to be destroyed…
Ok so from what I’ve seen of his work, Phantoms of Nabua is the only one that actually made me feel anything. Joe is one of these filmmakers that I feel should resonate with me, but for some reason usually leaves me cold.
That being said, Nabua resonated very deeply for me. His feature films, not so much.
Wow—It took eleven months to find two people who didn’t like it! Actually I’m sure there are more, but I happen to be a Weerasethakulian, so I’ll make way for the dissenters.
I adore Joe’s work.
I adore Joe too. He’s a terrible sweetie.
I’m always struck by the incredibly talented but incredibly humble. Those are the kinds of people you want in your life.
I want to see it and Uncle Boonmee. Before Apichatpong was great, I think he is going to even step another level with those two films. I have never rated one of his films 5 stars even though they make me think and moved me deeply. However, I feel he has been missing something and I can’t find what it is. Maybe it is his presence as a filmmaker within the film. I mean his films are his films, you can tell they were made by him so I don’t know what it is. But I want to go on the journey with him, and I don’t think I have yet.
Uncle Boonmee ahh …. anyone knows about it’s U.S Distribution or the DVD releases?
I believe Strand Releasing will distribute the film in the U.S. It’s scheduled for the spring of next year.
no, i read that louveture films is distributing it
ALSO, @House of Leaves
I DIDNT say i didnt like it
on the contrary, i liked it alot
however, understand it?
thats a completely different issue
that i did not achieve
i called Strand Releasing and they said they are coming out with it in March 2011 the US
MARK YOUR CALENDARS!