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COMING SOON (Thailand)

  Publicity Stills of
"Coming Soon"
(Courtesy of GV)

In Thai with English and Chinese subtitles
Director: Sophon Sakdapisit
Cast: Chantavit Dhanasevi, Vorakarn Rojjanavatchra
RunTime: 1 hr 25 mins
Released By: GV
Rating: NC-16

Official Website: http://www.comingsoonmovie-th.com/

Opening Day: 12 March 2009


What kind of scenes in a horror film scares you the most?

When a ghost appears totally unexpectedly?

When the main character does not see the ghost lurking up behind him?

When at the very end you find out that the main character was actually a ghost all along?

None of this compares to the feeling of arriving home alone and suddenly being struck by a feeling of déjà vu that you are reenacting the very same scenes in the horror movie you just saw!

This movie will scare you from the second you step inside the movie theatre. It will get you wondering if “something” or “someone” might be waiting for you to let your guard down.

The horror movie that you just saw is about to happen to you in real life!

Movie Review:

If youíve watched any last and late night shows at any multiplex before, chances are youíll experience some of the creeps when you emerge from the cinema hall and into some winding corridors before youíre out into a foyer. Not wanting to name which cinemas though, but for best effect, you should stay in the hall until the end credits have rolled, and make your exit alone. Your hair will stand especially if there are some well placed horror film standees which unexpectedly surprise you when you make a wrong turn.

Writer-director Sophon Sakdapisit exploits this for his latest film Coming Soon, which is a film within a film, shuttling between the 'reel' and the 'real' worlds where the characters inhabit. The marketing folks have wasted no time in reminding us of Sophonís pedigree, having co-written some of the best Thai horror films in recent years with Shutter and Alone. Here he makes his directorial debut, and I suppose youíve to cut him some slack as a rookie dipping his hand into the usual bag of tricks for that assured look and feel of a horror film.

Sakdapisit conjures a movie within a movie, thus giving the audience two fright fests in one film. 'Vengeful Spirit' tells of the supposedly true story of an ugly-as-a-witch old woman Chaba, frizzy haired, walking with a dead leg and all, who abducts the children of a village to fuel her crazed obsession for her own departed child. Naturally the villagers band together to rescue their tortured children, and hang Chaba from the ceiling of her hut.

And as we know with 'true stories', itíll likely be a box office draw, and the pirates want a piece of the pie on the cheap. Sophonís actual story for Coming Soon tells of a projectionist Shane (Chantavit Dhanasevi) who because of money issues, agree to cooperate with his boss to rip off the 'Vengeful Spirit' film from their advanced film reels, by recording it off the cinema screen in one late night illegal projection. But things donít go too well because his boss mysteriously disappears, and early in the film, we also learn that the Vengeful Spirit filmmakers had experienced bumps in the night during a test screening.

Together with ex-girlfriend and cinema usher Som (Vorakam Rojjanavatchra), Shane decides to get down to the bottom of things, and unfortunately the round-robin chasing of red-herrings did sag the story for a bit, given the reliance on formula such as, for starters, having a male-female investigating tag team and unfounded scares. But the best bits come during the beginning of the end, where Sakdapisit puts everything into overdrive and the chills come aplenty, where he builds the atmosphere perfectly, making it ripe through carefully constructed camera angles with much understated now-you-see-it-now-you-donít effect.

Ringu was a film revolving around a killer-video, and Coming Soon works perfectly for the big-screen format since itís based upon a film and set mostly in a cinema, which puts an audience in a familiar and immediate setting. I would have wondered how anyone would react in a theatre with limited audience members, and those scary moments come straight up in your face. Bangkok has some nice cinemas that can easily rival those found here, and this film could also serve like an ill-wish to film pirates, that those involved in piracy should meet with their just desserts (though not necessarily of the supernatural kind).

Coming Soon doesnít have enough to be an instant classic, but it bodes well for the GMM Tai Hub stable that theyíre still a force to be reckoned with when it comes to raking up the scares

Movie Rating:

(Coming soon with the expected chills and thrills)

Review by Stefan Shih


. The Coffin (2008)

. 4BIA (2008)

. Art of the Devil 3 (2008)

. The Spiritual World DVD (2008)

. The House (2007)

. Body #19 (2007)

. The Screen At Kamchanod (2007)

. Alone (2007)

. The Unseeable DVD (2007)

. Colic (2006)

. Art of the Devil 2 (2006)

. Art of the Devil (2004)

. Shutter (2004)

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