14 October 2013

11th World Film(s) Festival of Bangkok

11th World Film Festival of Bangkok
Stranger By The Lake
Synecdoche, New York
The 11th World Film Festival of Bangkok takes place next month at the SF World cinema (CentralWorld). It will open on 15th November, and will run until 24th November. (Oddly, the Festival's poster calls it the World Films [sic] Festival.)

Nontawat Numbenchapol's controversial Thai documentary Boundary will be screened on 17th and 18th November. Charlie Kaufman's directorial debut Synecdoche, New York will be shown on 16th November. (Kaufman wrote the screenplays for Adaptation, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, and Being John Malkovich.)

Alain Guiraudie's Stranger By The Lake, one of the most explicit gay dramas ever made, has also been selected, and will be shown on 21st and 22nd November. Filmed entirely on location, it features a man who witnesses a murder yet falls in love with the killer. The central character makes increasingly reckless decisions; his friend, a lonely bi-curious older man, is the only sympathetic character. The final reel increases the suspense, and veers towards Cruising-style excess, before ending abruptly.

The Festival is organised by Kriengsak Silakong, who I interviewed last year. (The 6th, 7th, and 8th Festivals were held at Paragon Cineplex; the 5th, 9th, and 10th took place at Esplanade Cineplex.)

Unfortunately, one film has been withdrawn from the Festival. The Thai Film Board denied permission to show To Singapore, With Love, directed by Tan Pin Pin, as the director did not apply for a permit before filming the documentary in Thailand. It seems that a film is withdrawn from a Thai film festival almost every year: Persepolis was banned from the 2007 Bangkok International Film Festival, This Area Is Under Quarantine was banned from the 7th World Film Festival, and Insects In The Backyard was banned after its screening at the 8th World Film Festival.

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