สนับสนุนโดย สำนักงานศิลปวัฒนธรรมร่วมสมัย กระทรวงวัฒนธรรม Supported by Office of Contemporary Art And Culture ,Ministry Of Culture

˹á
Ԩó
ɳ
§ҹ˹ѧȡ˹ѧҧ
ª˹ѧкǡѺ˹ѧ
ª  ˹§ҹ
 
ª˹ѧ
 
 
 
 

   

Kung Fu Tootsie

  By Sorradithep Supachanya
   
 

 

A deluge of adjectives flowed into my head as I finished watching Kung Fu Tootsie, a martial arts slapstick comedy about a sharp-tongued transvestite whose fate requires him to assume control of a local gangster mob after his father, the incumbent leader, has succumbed to a brain degenerative disease and his straight twin brother, the heir apparent, has been critically injured during a gang warfare. Most of these adjectives range from negative to grossly negative, but I think no other words are more suitable to the movie than this one: unrestrained self-indulgence.

Kung Fu Tootsie parodies the 1980s Hong Kong triad (Chinese gangster) films, a genre which captured the fancies of the comedian-turned-director Jaturong Ponboon in his younger days. Making a triad film had been his lifelong dream, he admitted in the press. Now that he finally had his chance, he was probably a little too enthusiastic in incorporating all the elements he loved about the genre: familiar character names, mahjong matches, and mealtime fights, just to name a few. Plus, for the sake of comedy, he added a gay twist, family drama, and random skirmishes with the police to the movie. Unfortunately for the audience, this mumbo jumbo of elements turns the movie into an incongruous story that meanders aimlessly from one situation to another.

The movie is further exacerbated by actors self-indulgence. Most of the supporting characters seem to be invented to serve ulterior motives of the actors who play them. The roles of the flamboyant cross-dressing trio, for example, seem to be an excuse for the performing comedians to do the unthinkable: strip naked in public. The role of the girlfriend allows the budding actress Pokchat Jib Tienchai to avoid playing a traditional damsel in distress. Other supporting members, notably Kriengsak Rienthong who plays a rival gang leader, appear onscreen in roles that serve no practical purposes to the story but offer them a chance to finally play the characters they know so well, as they have for years lent their voices to dub the Hong Kong triad movies into Thai.


Also enjoying a fair share of self-indulgence is the movies leader actor, newcomer Sittichai Boy Phapchompoo who rose to fame last year as the second runner-up in Thailands most popular star search competition. There is nothing in this movie he doesnt do: he cross-dresses, he screams like a girl, he dances in his underwear in front of a mirror, and, in one hilarious scene, he loses control of his sexual urges and gets it going on with another guy. But, then, before his image is tarnished, the movie reintroduces the straight brother for him to play and the movie is thrown into another confused path.

There seems to be a popular notion in Thai cinema that Thai comedy, especially those starring and/or directed by television comedians, is heavy on the humor and light on the substance, and that they should not be taken seriously. It would certainly be a mistake to expect Kung Fu Tootsie to depart from this trend.

   
   
   

Everything you want to know about Thai film, Thai cinema
edited by Anchalee Chaiworaporn อัญชลี ชัยวรพร   designed by Nat  
COPYRIGHT 2004 http://www.thaicinema.org. All Rights Reserved. contact: thaicine@yahoo.com
By accessing and browsing the Site, you accept, without limitation or qualification, these copyrights.
If you do not agree to these copyrights, please do not use the Site.