Sunday, June 17, 2012
The Love of Siam-An Award Winning Thai Film
The Love of Siam (Thai: รักแห่งสยาม, RTGS: Rak Haeng Sayam, pronounced [rák hɛ̀ŋ sà.jǎːm]) is a 2007 Thai gay-themed romantic-drama film written and directed by Chookiat Sakveerakul. A multi-layered family drama, a groundbreaking element of the story is a gay romance between two teenage boys. The film was released in Thailand on November 22, 2007. The fact that the gay storyline was not apparent from the film's promotional material initially caused controversy, but the film was received with critical acclaim and proved financially successful. It dominated Thailand's 2007 film awards season, winning the Best Picture category in all major events, The Love of Siam was received with critical acclaim upon its release. Bangkok Post film critic Kong Rithdee called the film "groundbreaking", in terms of being the first Thai film "to discuss teenagers' sexuality with frankness". He praised the mature, realistic family drama aspects of the film, as well as the solid performances, particularly by Sinjai Plengpanich as the mother Sunee. Another Bangkok Post commentator, Nattakorn Devakula, said the film contained important lessons for Thai society. "The point that the film attempts to teach viewers – and a largely conservative Thai society – is that love is an evolved form of emotional attachment that transcends sexual attraction of the physical form." A reviewer for The Nation called the film "brilliantly conceived". A few critics found fault with the film, among them Gregoire Glachant of BK magazine, who commented that "The Love of Siam isn't a very well shot movie. Chookiat's camera only records his dull play with equally dull angles and light as it wanders from homes to schools, to recording studio, and to Siam Square without sense of purpose or directions." The movie also reached a rating of 7.6 (out of 10) on the Internet Movie Database.