Cleveland International Film Festival } April 7 – April 20, 2021

Mon-Rak Transistor

Year: 2001
Country: THAILAND
Run Time: 121 minutes

MON-RAK TRANSISTOR comes with a long-distance dedication to native crooner Surapol Sombatcharoen - murdered in 1968. Beginning with a grueling ordeal in a prison cell, it unreels in flashback the saga of the aptly-named Pan. An upbeat, rustic innocent, Pan strives to make his own luck, only to see it go bad. Against the wishes of a gun-toting patriarch he wins the hand of village beauty Sadow (giving her a transistor radio as a wedding gift), aces a talent show - "From the Gutter to the Stars," the Bangkok equivalent of "American Idol" - and becomes a singing sensation. Not bad for a guy who often faints after giving his pipes a turn at the microphone. Yet this Lost Boy also gets drafted into the army, spends years apart from his wife and child, commits an unspeakable crime, and suffers virtual slavery in the canefields. And the cherished radio falls into decay and disrepair. Pan's Candide-like journey, according to the filmmaker, is "a sweet and tender piece of candy with a satirical poison in the middle." (In Thai with English subtitles)

Screenplay
Pen-Ek Ratanaruang (based on the novel by Wat Wanlayangkoon)

Producer
Nonzee Nimibutr, Duangkamol Limcharoen

Cinematography
Chankit Chamniwikaipong

Editing
P.D. Yukol

Principal Cast
Suppakorn Kitsuwan, Siriyakorn Pukkaveas, Black Pomtong, Somlek Sakdikul, Porntip Papanai, Ampol Rattanawong

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