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Me Myself
  Anchalee Chaiworaporn / cross-published in 2008 Far East Film Festival Catalogue
   
 

Me Myself ѡԭ
t.l.: Me Myself khor-hai-rak-jong-ja-roen

Thailand, 2007, 102 mins., Thai
Dir: Pongpat Wachirabunjong
Scr: Kongdej Jaturanrasmee; Art Dir: Thanakrit Athibay ; Ph (color): Sayombhu Mukdeeprom; Ed: Sunit Asvinikul, Muanfan Uppathan; Prod: Thanya Wachirabunjong.
Cast: Ananda Everingham, Chayanan Manomaisantipab
Date of first release in territory:
Source: Mono Film :

 



Me Myself, the directorial debut of veteran actor Pongpat Wachirabunjong came up with several unexpectations in its first domestic releases. Nobody expected such a fine piece of film would come from the firstime film director Pongpat who only had experience in directing television series a form of low-graded entertainment in this country. The only thing that certities the films potential merit was the presence of the writer Kongdej Jaturanrasmee, one of the top two scriptwriters of the country. A few weeks after its release, the film drew attention from the gay groups who claimed the impossibilites of the plot a drag queen might turn straight if he loses his memories. Me Myself not surprisingly became a mild sleeper hit in the country.

The film starts off with a young heartbroken woman Oom, driving her car and suddenly crashing an unknown man. When he wakes up, he loses his memories. Without full consent, she has to bring him into her apartment, where she lives with her six-year-old nephew. With some problems in the beginning, the two develop their relationship later, from untrust, to love. Tan, a name that is found on his necklace, is an ideal man that is always in every womens dream. He cooks. He cleans. He gets along with the kid. He is gentle. He is sensitive. He always encourages you. In their happiness, they decide not to trace down his past. But if only, Oom would notice some of Tans gestures. His hands and walks sometimes show womenly. And then one day, the police find his belongings. Tan, actually, is Tanya, a dancer in a drag bar.

Director Pongpat has some problems to distinguish the difference between the film arts or television soap opera in the first half-hour of the story. The section plays too much on gags, jokes, as well as the over-the-top performances. But he enjoyably rides on his cinematic ticket with the rest part of the movie natural performance, nice camera angles, and dramatic output. Shots show their growing intimacy, sudden shocks, and deep pains when the truth is revealed. Lead actor Ananda Everhingham, the most wanted Thai actor today, shows his acting talents, not just a young coward kid as in The Shutter. His pain, his confusion, and uncertainty grow deep. This is the best role that he has taken so far. Watch him out. Last year, he was invited as one of the stars in Pusans Asian Star Summit. And now he has been cast in all of the works by major Thai directors like Pen-Ek Ratanaruangs Ploy, Nonzee Nimibutrs Queen of Lungsaka, Wisit Sasanatiengs Red Eagle, as well as Ekachai Eukrongthams The Coffin.

Director
Pongpat Wachirabunjong was born in 1961 and first entered the film industry as an actor. He won numerous acting awards from his roles both in films and television series. He also became a singer and released several albums during 1988 1995. He started his directing, firstly with television series in 2003 and film in 2007 with Me Myself.

2007 Me Myself

   
 
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  By Sorradithep Supachanya
   
 


He cooks. He cleans. He loves her for who she is, and he is everything her ex-boyfriend is not: gentle, sensitive, and supportive (no, you dont look fat in that dress). Whats the problem? Hes gay and she doesnt know it. Neither does he.

Such is the premise of Me Myself, a big screen directorial debut from veteran actor and television director Pongpat Wachirabunjong. It opens with a heartbroken Oom accidentally hitting a man and giving him amnesia. Feeling guilty, Oom takes him into her own apartment and calls him Tan after the word on the necklace found on him. They fall in love but soon discover that Tan is gay and, more shockingly, the star of a transvestite cabaret show in Phuket (dont worry, this is not the climax; Im not spoiling the movie for you).

Me Myself is supposedly a tear jerking romance but I had some troubles shedding tears because one element of the character and plot seems so incredible: can an amnesiac transvestite who suffers identity loss but fully retains his personality and normal intelligence forget his gay experience? As the movie later shows, Tan grows up among transvestite cabaret showgirls and has been cross-dressing and putting on makeup since childhood. So, it seems a little unrealistic that one tragic accident can completely suppress all these experience (yes, suppress because all the memories later return), and Tan feels nothing when he goes through Ooms cosmetic kit and wardrobe or sees a cute guy walks on by.

After discovering Tans gay past, the movie seems to wanders aimlessly as it dabbles with various unconnected subplots, such as Tans readjustment to his cabaret lifestyle, Ooms problem at work, and her relationship with her young nephew. It ignores topics of love, sexuality, or social acceptance. Was their love real? Is their love based on friendship rather than attraction (platonic vs. romantic)? Is he ready to question his sexuality and feeling? Can they live together? These are questions that come up after the revelation, but are never answered in the movie.

Personally, I feel that this movie would work better if Tan is never a transvestite showgirl. Cut out that element and we still have an enjoyable romantic story about guy without a past falling in love with a girl who wants to forget about her past. After all, the movie already seems that way, as it devotes most of its time to showing the audience how the two protagonists fall in love. In the beginning we see Oom treating Tan as a suspicious stranger and putting on three levels of locks on her bedroom door to keep him out. But, soon Oom notices how Tan supports her when she needs somebody (the stage show scene) or how he makes a fool of himself for her (the karaoke scene). This part of the movie is well-paced and the romance not only heavy on the emotions but also logical and believable. Here I must applaud screenwriter Kongdej Jaturanrasmee (whose work includes another tear jerker The Letter in 2004) for such as feat.

 

 

Chainant Manomaisantiphab makes her acting debut here as Oom and is convincing as a sassy 20-something career woman, a reluctant host to a stranger, and a surrogate mother to her nephew. But, she is a little too stoical when it comes to displaying complex emotions after discovering Tans identity. Ananda Everingham (of Shutter fame) is excellent here playing Tan. Keep an eye on his small gestures, such as the way he sits or waves his hands, they clearly communicate his character of a guy with elusive past and conflicting emotions. He is surely among the best of his generation.

   
   

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