Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.
Thailand, 2001. Applause Pictures, Cinemasia. Screenplay by Nonzee Nimibutr, Sirapak Paoboonkerd, based on the novel The Story of Jan Darra by Utsana Phleungtham. Cinematography by Nattawut Kittikhun. Produced by Yuet-Jan Hui, Duangkamol Limcharoen, Nonzee Nimibutr. Music by Chatchai Pongprapaphan. Production Design by Ek Iemchuen. Film Editing by Sunij Asavinikul, Tanin Tienkaew.
Epic Thai drama that serves as an exercise in tedium. Jan Dara recounts his life growing up on the giant estate of a father who never loved him, blaming hievery day of his life for his wife’s dying in childbirth. The young man is left hated and abandoned by his family, including his half-sister who is constantly encouraged by her father to shun her own relative. Jan seeks comfort in the arms of his aunt/now stepmother, and later in the beds of his father’s mistresses. It should be a moving drama, but in between all the endless (and boring) sex scenes there is about a thimble’s measure of depth to it. Photography and sets are a new level of sumptuousness, but just to look at a film isn’t enough to make it enjoyable.
Toronto International Film Festival: 2001