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I-San Special

I-San Special (2002). (Objectifs Films)

Part of the film series
Blissfully Thai

Dir. Mingmongkol Sonakul. 2002. 110 min. 35mm. English subtitles.

On a full-moon night, something unusual takes place on board a bus traveling from Bangkok to I-San in northeastern Thailand. Seemingly possessed, passengers act out parts of a soap opera playing on the radio. Whenever the bus makes a stop, the passengers spring back to real life. Partly inspired by an idea of Apichatpong Weerasethakul, this unusual and dream-like road movie playfully explores the dichotomies of real life and drama, and of professional actors on the radio and non-actors playing passengers.

FIPRESCI Special Mention Award, Singapore International Film Festival 2002
"A new kind of road movie ... a unique dreamlike experience." — Johnny Ray Huston, San Francisco Bay Guardian
"A surreal Brechtian experiment." — Samantha Culp, South China Morning Post

Mingmongkol Sonakul (b. 1971) is synonymous with the rise of Thai independent cinema, having produced the seminal 1998 film Mysterious Object at Noon by Apichatpong Weerasethakul. She is also the producer of Invisible Waves (2006) by Pen-ek Ratanaruang and The Tin Mine (2005) by Jira Maligool. Mingmongkol studied film at the San Francisco Art Institute. As a photographer, she has also mounted exhibitions and installations in many countries since 1998. Director Filmography (features): 3 Friends (2005), I-San Special (2002).

This series is presented by Asia Society in association with Cineaste.

Major support for this film series is provided by the New York State Council on the Arts and the Thai-US Partnership Program of Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Thai Artists Alliance.


Event Details

Fri 20 May 2011
6:45pm - 8:45pm

725 Park Avenue, New York, NY

Online and phone ticketing is now closed for this event. Tickets can be purchased at the door.