Thursday, February 27, 2014

Bangkok Cinema Scene: Movies opening February 27-March 5, 2014

3 Days to Kill

Kevin Costner is in the midst of a comeback, turning up recently as Superman's Earth daddy in Man of Steel and a spy boss in Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit.

He takes the lead in 3 Days to Kill, a vehicle that's similar to the barefisted bruisers that another ageing action star, Liam Neeson, has been doing of late.

Costner is a government hitman who is running out of time after he learns he has a terminal illness. Before he shuffles off his mortal coil, he aims to rebuild his relationship with his estranged wife (Connie Nielsen) and daughter (Hallee Steinfield). But then he gets a chance to at finding a cure to his illness in exchange for tracking down the world's most ruthless terrorist.

Charlie's Angels and Terminator: Salvation helmer McG directs, and like Liam Neeson's recent movies, it's a Euro-thriller, produced by Luc Besson. Amber Heard also stars, playing Costner's CIA handler.

Critical reception is mixed. Rated 15+

Also opening

Open Grave – Sharlto Copley (District Nine, Elysium) is a man who wakes up in a pit of corpses with no memory of how he got there. It's directed by Gonzalo López-Gallego, the Spanish director who previously did the haunted space-mission thriller Apollo 18. Critical reception is mixed. Rated 15+

The Monkey King – Martial-arts star Donnie Yen takes the title role in this new adaptation of the Chinese epic "The Journey to the West". The first in a planned trilogy, the story is an origin tale, focusing on the Monkey King's creation from a heavenly stone, his gaining magical powers and being imprisoned under a mountain for 500 years. Chow Yun-fat also stars, playing the Jade Emperor. Other stars include Aaron Kwok, Joe Chen, Peter Ho, Kelly Chen, Zhang Zilin and Gigi Leung. Pou-Soi Cheang, better known for his gritty modern action thrillers like Accident and Motorway, directs. It's in actual 3D but is Thai-dubbed only. Rated G

She Devil (รักเราเขย่าขวัญ, Rak Rao Khayao Khwan) – A young man (Harin "Dim Tattoo Color" Suthamjaras) gets married to a beautiful but mysterious woman (Banyanach Jirarojthanakasem) who becomes a zombie after the wedding. Pisut Praesangeam directs. It's at Major Cineplex. Rated 13+

Muay Jin Din Kong Loke (หมวยจิ้น ดิ้นก้องโลก) – A teenage boy from Bangkok seeks a change of scenery to heal his broken heart. He moves to a seaside village where he falls for a local lass who works in a convenience store. But she's aiming to fulfill her best friend's dream by dancing on stage with a popular singer. It's at SF cinemas. Rated G

Gang Preed! Ja Read Jai Ther (แกงค์ปรี๊ด! จะ Read ใจเธอ) – High-school boys have to complete a project for their film club. They decide to make a ghost movie with a mysterious girl as their star. Rated 13+

Love's Coming (ใช่รักหรือเปล่า, Chai Rak Rue Prao) – Teenage boys suspect one of their friends is having relations with the boy next door, so they set out to expose his sexual orientation. It's at Esplanade Cineplex; no English subtitles. Rated 15+

Shaadi Ke Side Effects – Farhan Akhtar and Vidya Balan star in this Bollywood romantic comedy about the many ups and downs of marriage. It's at Major Cineplex Suhumvit and Rama III. Opens Friday.

Also showing

The Friese-Greene Club – Tonight is the final strange vision of the future for February – the original 1975 Rollerball, an indictment of sports, celebrity and violence that was ahead of its time. It's directed by Norman Jewison and stars a tough-as-nails James Caan. Tomorrow at 7pm is a special event organized by Le Cool Bangkok, "From Ecstasy to Rapture. A Journey Through Spanish Experimental Cinema". March kicks off with All the President's Men, the first in a Saturday series of hit films from two of cinema's greatest years, 1975 and 1976. Sundays in March are devoted to the director Michael Curtiz, starting with one of the all-time classics, Casablanca. This Monday morning, the club will host an Oscar breakfast with live TV coverage of the Academy Awards. Tuesdays are request days at the club – you can ask for any film but you have to round up at least three others who want to see it with you. Wednesdays in March are reserved for special events, with the Creative Ministry holding one of its film-industry networking nights on March 5. Thursdays in March are in memory of the late Philip Seymour Hoffman and Fridays offer "perspectives of war". Shows start at 8pm unless otherwise noted. The FGC is down an alley next to the Queen's Park Imperial Hotel on Sukhumvit Soi 22. With just nine seats, the screening room fills up fast, so reservations are a must. There are sometimes changes in the schedule, so please check the website and Facebook page before planning a visit.

Filmvirus Double Bill – The British experimental filmmaking duo of Jack Bond and Jane Arden are introduced in this Sunday's double-bill with Separation from 1967 and The Other Side of the Underneath from 1972. Bond directs Separation, starring Arden as a middle-aged woman in the breakdown of her marriage. Procol Harum is featured on the soundtrack. Arden directs The Other Side, a film that, according to Wikipedia "currently has almost mythical status amongst fans of radical, experimental cinema, partly because of its visionary and disturbing depictions of the mental state of its schizophrenic protagonist". The shows start at 12.30 in the Pridi Banomyong Library at Thammasat University, Tha Chan. You'll need to show an I.D. to gain entry.

Alliance Française – "Women in film" is the theme for March at the Alliance, starting on Wednesday, March 5 with Le Paradis des bêtes, a 2012 comedy-drama directed by Estelle Larrivaz and starring Stéfano Cassetti, Géraldine Pailhas and Muriel Robin. Dominique, a possessive father, is the manager of a pet shop who gets into a fight with his wife and runs away with his children to Switzerland. The show starts at 7pm at the Alliance Française de Bangkok.

Also showing

Stay away from the "Bangkok shutdown" rally sites, where violence has flared up. Last Sunday, a grenade exploded at the Big C near the Ratchaprasong site, killing three people, including two children. Early Tuesday, there were bomb blasts and gunfire at the Thaniya Plaza night entertainment area near the Silom rally, and more shots were fired at the protest sites early Wednesday.

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