Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Tropical Malady

Sud Pralad
Anna Sanders Films
Director: Apichatpong Weerasethakul
Length: 118 min.
Format: DVD
Date Viewed: 31 January

This is a film that I liked upon reflection much more than while actually watching it. Tropical Malady is essentially two short films (both have opening credits) that tell the same story with the same two main characters and corresponding actors, except the first is told literally and the second metaphorically. The metaphorical half, as expected is difficult to understand and, on little more than 4 hours of sleep as was my case, hard to get through. Precious little happens, and the concept of a standard timeline is meaningless. The second half is well-crafted and creative in its execution, but I preferred the the first half. The leads are both good in their roles and they have a natural charisma together. Their scene in the movie house is extremely erotic and their scene in the long-house when Keng lays his head on Tong's leg is incredibly romantic. The film is good overall and the cinematography is often breathtaking, but it didn't spark with me as much as I wish it had. If you are a passive viewer of films, don't bother; this is for active viewers only.


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