Limitless Cinema in Broken English

May 8, 2008

NINETEENTH POLL: UNFAMILIAR PLACES

Filed under: Uncategorized — celinejulie @ 10:31 pm

This is about a poll in my bilingual blog at http://celinejulie.blogspot.com .

 

My nineteenth poll is inspired by my most favorite film of April 2008 – FINAL SOLUTION (2003, Rakesh Sharma). This film is about the genocide in Gujarat, India. I had rarely heard the name Gujarat before I saw this film. This documentary is very sad. One of the saddest stories told in this film is about a politician who tried to save many genocidal victims, but he couldn’t save them and he also was brutally killed.

Seeing the hate mandate in FINAL SOLUTION somehow makes me very afraid of what will happen in Thailand. Some recent news in Thailand makes me very afraid of some narrow-minded Thai people who can’t accept other people who are ‘different’. These Thai people even tried to spread the hatred and urged other people to cause violence.

This is the news which makes me very afraid of living in Thailand:

CHOTISAK NO SHOW AT FORUM DUE TO THREATS FROM MANAGER RADIO

You can read the news here:
http://www.prachatai.com/english/news.php?id=623

This is a quote from the news:

“The organizers, including the Santi Pracha Dharma Institute and Fah Diew Kan (Same Sky) magazine, started the forum with an audio clip recorded from a radio programme ‘Metro Life’ which belongs to the Manager Group, the driving force of the anti-Thaksin, royalist People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD). The radio programme was broadcast on the night of April 30 at FM 97.75, or Manager Radio, during which the hosts incited listeners to come to the forum to attack Chotisak and disrupt the event.

(Note: since the evening of May 2, the audio files of the programme for April 29 and 30 have been removed from www.managerradio.com, but can be downloaded here (29) and here (30).)

The organizers therefore informed participants that Chotisak would not join the panel at the forum for safety reasons.”

–I love FINAL SOLUTION very much, and want to create a poll which can include this film. One of the interesting things in this film is that it allows me to have a glimpse into Gujarat, a place where I had no knowledge about. This fact inspires me to make a list of my favorite films which let me explore unfamiliar places.

THESE GREAT FILMS LET ME EXPLORE UNFAMILIAR PLACES. WHICH FILMS DO YOU LIKE?

1.ALEXEI AND THE SPRING (2002, Motohashi Seiichi, Belarus)

2.CALENDAR (1993, Atom Egoyan, Armenia)

3.COLD HOMELAND (1994, Volker Koepp, Kaliningrad in Russia)

4.THE CORRIDOR (1994, Sharunas Bartas, Lithuania)
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0376746/

5.THE CRAZY ON THE ROCKS (2007, Altaf Mazid, Assam? in India)

I put “?” after Assam, because I’m not sure if this film was shot in Assam or not.

6.FALLEN (2005, Fred Kelemen, Latvia)
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0470840/

7.FINAL SOLUTION (2003, Rakesh Sharma, Gujarat in India)
You can watch this film here:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=3829364588351777769&q=&hl=en

8.THE FLIGHT OF THE BEES (1998, Jamshed Usmonov + Min Boung-hun, Tajikistan)

9.THE HORSE THIEF (1986, Tian Zhuangzhuang, Tibet)
You can read Jonathan Rosenbaum’s review of this film here:
http://www.jonathanrosenbaum.com/?p=7763

I knew about Rosenbaum’s website from Girish Shambu’s blog:
http://www.girishshambu.com/blog/2008/05/alphabet-of-cinema.html

10.HUNTING THE LION WITH BOW AND ARROW (1965, Jean Rouch, Mali/Niger)

11.LAND WITHOUT BREAD (1933, Luis Bunuel, Las Hurdes in Spain)

12.LAST TRAPPER (2004, Nicolas Vanier, Yukon in Canada)

13.LITTLE MEN (2003, Nariman Turebayev, Kazakhstan)
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0376746/

14.MANORO (2006, Brillante Mendoza, Pampanga in Philippines)

15.PALMS (1993, Artur Aristakisyan, Moldavia)

16.POSSIBLE LIVES (2006, Sandra Gugliotta, Patagonia in Argentina)
You can read Alone Again’s review of this film in Thai here:
http://www.bloggang.com/viewdiary.php?id=aloneagain&month=04-2008&date=25&group=1&gblog=70

17.THE ROAD TO KALIMUGTONG (2006, Mes de Guzman, Benguet in Philippines)

18.THE SORTER’S BRIDGE (1999, Charles de Meaux + Philippe Parreno, Pamir)

19.THE TIN MINE (2005, Jira Maligool, Takuathung in Thailand)
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0454190/

20.UNKNOWN PLEASURES (2002, Jia Zhangke, Shanxi in China)

You can cast multiple votes.

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2 Comments »

  1. This is my reply to Brian Darr in my bilingual blog:
    http://celinejulie.blogspot.com/2008/05/nineteenth-poll-unfamiliar-places.html

    Thank you very much for your vote, Brian.

    –As for THE TIN MINE, I think it is not a must-see film. I like this film a lot, but I’m not sure if it is really worth a “strong” effort to seek it out. I recommend this film, but only in the case that it is easy to find its DVD.

    Compared to most mainstream Thai films, I like THE TIN MINE very much. That’s not to say that THE TIN MINE is excellent. It means that THE TIN MINE is not as emotionally manipulative as most Thai films. I like the “rhythm of life” in THE TIN MINE. It seems as if the film lets the uneven, uneventful, unsmooth, inharmonious rhythm of life control the rhythm of the film, while other Thai films lets the rules of three act or the rules of climax control the rhythm of the film. One Thai critic from Bioscope magazine made an interesting observation that THE TIN MINE is a film in four acts, not in standard three acts.

    I much prefer THE TIN MINE to MEHKHONG FULL MOON PARTY (2002, Jira Maligool, A-). In my personal opinion, MEHKHONG FULL MOON PARTY is too emotionally manipulative, or it tries to manipulate me to feel something I hate. It’s a kind of feel-good film which makes me feel bad instead. Fortunately, the thing I don’t like in MEHKHONG FULL MOON PARTY is not to be found in THE TIN MINE.

    One of the interesting things about THE TIN MINE is that some people seem to hate this film very much, but they like MEHKHONG FULL MOON PARTY. Fortunately, many of my friends share the same opinion with me—we love THE TIN MINE. I think THE TIN MINE is a kind of film which I want to promote because it is undeservedly attacked by some people. I want to shout to the world that I love THE TIN MINE, not because I think THE TIN MINE is one of the best Thai films of all time, but just because some people hate it.

    –I’m very sorry about what happened to your blog (the disappearance of old information), but I’m glad that you continue blogging as usual.

    Comment by celinejulie — May 13, 2008 @ 8:48 pm

  2. This is my reply to Matthew Hunt in my bilingual blog:
    http://celinejulie.blogspot.com/2008/05/nineteenth-poll-unfamiliar-places.html

    I’m glad you like THE TIN MINE. Another thing I like in THE TIN MINE is that it is one of very few vocation-oriented Thai films which are really serious about the vocations depicted. I think most Thai films or most Thai TV dramas are not serious about the professions of the characters. This is the opposite of Japanese films or TV series. Even some US TV melodramas, such as MELROSE PLACE, pay more attention to the problems in the careers of the characters more than Thai dramatic films.

    I just saw FIRST FLIGHT (2008, Tanit Jitnukul, A-/B+) in January, and think it is a little bit funny that the film shows the training of these Thai pilots for only 5-10 minutes. I think the film might have improved if it was more serious about the vocation. However, a critic (http://konmongnang.exteen.com ) points out that the film still has some good points, especially the depiction of the democratization of Thailand during that era by having “a proletariat” as the film’s main character.

    As for vocation-oriented or sports-oriented films, I think the opposites of THE TIN MINE include films such as CHEERLEADER QUEENS (2003, Poj Arnon, B-) and MATCH POINT (2005, Thanapon Thanangkul, B-). These two films should have paid more attention to the struggle of the cheerleaders or the volleyball players, respectively, in the films.

    Comment by celinejulie — May 16, 2008 @ 3:53 pm


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