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13: GAME OF DEATH (Thailand)


Genre: Thriller
Starring: Krissada Sukusol, Achita Sikamana, Sarunyoo Wongkrachang, Nathapong Arunnetra
Director: Chookiat Sakveeraku
Rating: NC-16 (Some disturbing scenes)

Year Made: 2007




- Trailer
- Deleted Scenes
- The Making of




Languages: Thai
Subtitles: Chinese/English
Aspect Ratio: Anamorphic Widescreen 4x3
Sound: Dolby Digital
Running Time: 1 hr 49 mins
Region Code: PAL 3
Distributor: Innoform Media




13 is a new and very secret competition offering a grand prize of 100 million Baht. The contestants are chosen from those most afflicted with problems involving work, money, family and love. If they can complete 13 tasks, they'll receive riches beyond their wildest dreams. But there's a catch...the challenges will test them in every aspect of their lives from love to religion and even moral values. They may seem undemanding when they start but as they progress they become increasingly more intense until finally, they reach a stage where they are no longer sure if they are human anymore. As with every game there are rules and these rules must be obeyed at all times. If they fail even one of the tasks, they will be dismissed from the game. The rules prohibit them from giving up from telling anyone else that they are playing and from investigating the origin of the game. A man named Phuchit is delighted to be offered the chance to compete, little realizing that it will cost him his friends, his family, his sanity and perhaps even his life....


As much as this Thai movie looks like one of those senseless horror flicks which the country is fondly churning out these days, it is, mind you, actually worth your time. So much so that it has won in two categories at the 2007 Thailand Film Association Awards.

Picking up the best actor award is Krissada Sukusol, who plays a out-of-luck man who receives a mysterious call one day, telling him that he can win 100 million baht if he completes 13 tasks. As absurd as it sounds, when everything is not going your way, you’d actually take up this bizarre challenge. Being a horror movie, the mission begins getting out of hand, leading to some deadly consequences.

Based on a comic book, this 115-minute movie does manage to engage the audience, given its interesting premise. Horror fans will be reminded of the Saw and Hostel series, where games of torture are played. But this Chookiat Sakveeraku-directed flick manages to sustain quite a fair bit of our attention from the moment the first challenge is executed. As the movie progresses, some tasks may seem outright silly (check out the one where the protagonist has to eat some dung-like delicacy in a Chinese restaurant – the dish does look like what the Chinese is capable of cooking up) and laughable (check out the one where he has to carry a dead man out of an abandoned well – the corpse is so fake-looking it made the whole scene hilarious), but you’d be awaiting the next one to be announced through the lead’s Nokia mobile phone.

Sukusol clearly showcases his fine acting in this movie, playing a demoralized man whose life cannot get any worse, and spiraling downwards into further depression and wrongdoings. The anguish and torment in the sunken eyes are so scarily real that it made us wonder whether we miserable urbanites look like him when we travel on the bustling streets of Singapore. The plot goes eventually awry and culminates in a moralizing conclusion where viewers are treated to a lesson on forgiveness and letting go of the past.

At the end of the day, there will be timid viewers who are frightened by the shock tactics of the movie, but we don’t really think much of the somewhat cheap-looking effects used in the movie (think a broken rotten hand and a head sawed into two which will make any self-respecting horror fan chuckle instead of cringing in fear). Still, it clinched the Best Visual Effects prize at the Thailand Film Association Awards: so you can imagine how much worse off the other Thai horror flicks fare in that department.


Like Colic, this Code 3 disc contains bonus features which do not have any English subtitles – tsk tsk. There is a “Trailer”, a 17-minute “Making Of” (Sukusol is a really soft-spoken man in our opinion) and a 2-minute “Deleted Scenes” (the filmmakers had a commentary while the two leads talked and talked in a life – in Thai of course).


The disc’s visual transfer isn’t crystal clear, but is enough to have you figure out what’s happening in the dark abandoned well, and is presented in its original Thai soundtrack.



Review by John Li



Alternative Opinion:

The movie review by our columnist

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This review is made possible with the kind support from InnoForm


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