first thing that strikes you about the director and
cast of the movie Pleasure Factory is how unabashed
they are when it comes to the film’s intimate
and seductive themes of prostitution and pleasure seeking.
In fact, they seem to be more than delighted to talk
by director Ekachai Uekrongtham, the cast and crew were
in town recently to promote the film, which was an official
selection for the Un Certain Regard programme at the
2007 Cannes Film Festival. The Singapore-Thai picture
tells three intertwining tales of pleasure seekers and
pleasure providers during the course of one night in
Geylang, Singapore’s renowned red light district.
don’t think Geylang is a dark place at all,”
says Uekrongtham during the press conference held at
Mandarin Oriental Hotel. “In fact, I find the
illumination beautiful. The tourism board does not tell
you to visit places like that, but I think these are
the kind of places you should check out.”
during an interview with Moviexclusive.com, the pleasant
filmmaker tells us how he hopes that this “small
project” of his would provide a “unique
voice” to the filmmaking industry.
hope it has the power to do something to the audience’s
I hope it has made me a better person and be less prejudiced
about certain things,” says the humble Uekrongtham,
whose last feature Beautiful Boxer (2003) was about
a transgender Muay Thai fighter.
the film, up-and-coming local filmmaker Loo Zihan plays
an army boy who visits Geylang to lose his virginity,
and has several bold nude scenes. A third-year undergraduate
at Nanyang Technological University’s School of
Art, Design and Media, Loo is no stranger to controversial
roles like this. Earlier this year, he made a daring
feature film Solos with fellow local director Kan Lume,
in which he also starred in.
film was passed with cuts for the Singapore Film Festival,
and was eventually withdrawn.
didn’t know it would be so controversial. I guess
with this movie, I’m more of a victim of circumstances.”
Loo chuckles good-naturedly when asked about his choice
of roles. “When you understand that an actor is
a tool, it does not matter whether the sex scenes are
with a man or a woman,” he adds.
talented young man wishes the media would not concentrate
on the seedy aspect of this film. “I hope the
viewers will feel for its sentiments, and realize that
it’s all about human connectedness.”
actor Ananda Everingham, who plays a random tourist
in Geylang, shares this sentiment.
wish audiences will walk into the theatre without any
cynicism or any expectation of what is right and what
is wrong. As long as they feel a little inspired by
any of the characters, as long as they feel the urge
to call someone up to talk about anything, the film
would have worked,” says the charming actor coolly.
known for his lead role in the Thai horror movie Shutter
(2004), the articulate actor reveals to us how he finds
acting very difficult.
always have had a hard time with acting. It’s
very tough to get into character, and it’s so
exhausting and tiring at the end of the day. I find
it so torturous.”
well-spoken actor then goes on to tell us about his
character in this movie, who has only three lines: “That
is why this film has been a breeze for me. I’m
like the audience’s eyes, and I need not to be
such a pleasure; it’s almost like taking a vacation.”
Pleasure Factory opens 25 October and is reviewed here