Saturday, May 05, 2007

The Passion (Ammahit Phitsawat)

Show and Tell

"This Year's Most Controversial Sex Thriller" proclaims the blurb on the promotional poster. Whoever wrote that must either be out of their minds, or must have watched a different version which contained so many raunchy sequences they were left out for private consumption. But it worked though, as I theatre I went to had screenings which totally sold out.

To suckers easily believing the marketing department of course. And putting Bongkoj Khongmalai in a seductive pose on the poster worked wonders too. To put it in the correct context, this movie is not a sex thriller, and it actually brings back memories of those 80s Hong Kong B-grade flicks which go straight to video. The presentation is messy with its convoluted plot, and have characters in which all are extremely unlikable. While it tries to be a little smart in offering its twist ending, it's too little too late, and try as you might to understand the intended storyline, its slack delivery has already done too much damage to salvage anything.

Set in a multiplex cinema complex over the course of one night, Bongkoj Khongmalai (one of the Chai-Lai Angels, in case you find her familiar) stars as a lady seemingly obsessed with watching every movie in that new multiplex, buying one ticket for every screening, only to find the right moment with gathered courage to stab herself in an act of suicide. However, the lecherous security manager of the complex will have none of that, as he turns it into his obsession to rape her.

And that's almost the gist of the movie. Just to show how corrupt the security manager is, he deals drugs to employees on the side, and makes extra income (by the millions) in selling "porn" based on covert CCTV cameras which he has strategically placed in female washrooms and changing rooms. Basically the plot and premise doesn't have too much logic involved, and it definitely cannot be classified as a thriller as it just doesn't have the pizzazz to be one.

Added to the mix are a host of throwaway characters like a head goon from security who's infatuated with a spunky cleaner lady, who in turn is smitten with the cinema usher, who in turn owes loads of money to the security manager because of his drug addiction. After we're introduced to the characters, we're led to episode after episode of simple scheming to get rich, women trying to escape capture by fighting off security folks in really bad fight action sequences which throws in everything and almost involved the kitchen sing, and plot loopholes so big you can fly an aeroplane through.

Sex sells, but this movie definitely shortchanged everyone with bad story, acting, everything. Even the R21 rating for violence is laughable, as those scenes came off as amateurish and more comedic than horrific, fake blood, bad CGI and all.

Oh, for those who want to attempt at undressing Bongkol Khongmalai, you can play this flash based game from the official movie website. The only catch is you must be able to read Thai, and get a number of questions right. Have fun!

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