(2002, 112 minutes)
Wednesday, November 5
6:30 p.m. – Korean Studies Auditorium
The film series continues with another road movie, but the I-San Special is no ordinary bus trip home. Director Mingmongkol Sonakul channels Apichatpong Weerasetkul to focus her dream-like story on engaging themes found in Thailand’s contemporary cultural landscape. A bus leaves Bangkok for a small town in Northeast Thailand. As the film’s characters board the bus, they’re possessed by the prime-time spirits of a televised soap opera, speaking in dubbed voices. Using this creative device and employing professional dub actors for the voice overs and first-time actors for the passengers, Mingmongkol creates two sets of dramas for her films’ travelers, and each contains truths and fictions in exploring how pop culture affects Thai people.
Contrasting melodrama and realism, and an ingenious mix of sound and screenplay, we are left to wonder if Mathavee (Phurida Vichitpan) is an evil stepmother or opportunistic businesswoman? Is handsome Danny (Mark Salmon) a romantic hero or criminal drifter? You’ll have to get on the bus to find out! – Johnny Ray Huston
[Note: No trailer]
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