Tears of the Black Tiger

Year: 2000
Production Co: Aichi Arts Center
Director: Wisit Sasanatieng
Writer: Wisit Sasanatieng
There are as many kinds of movie lovers as there are movies. You only have to look at the armies of film student graduates leaving colleges and schools desperate to be directors.

Why do they want to be directors? Maybe to work on a film set, maybe because they love a certain style of movie (usually Quentin Tarantino), but it's almost never to tell stories society has never heard before.

That's why I happen to love movies, and if that was the sole reason for them to exist, then a film like Tears of the Black Tiger would have no reason for being.

It's a lurid, pastel Thai western. Yes, if you haven't seen it, you heard that right. With actors that look like Bangkok ladyboys and all shot in vivid colours turned up way too high in colour grading, it tells the story of romantic, roving bandidos, lovelorn ladies and the evil cavalry determined to get their man.

It's so over the top in design, acting and style you wonder if the director is taking the piss out of the very iconic Americana of the western.

It's also excruciating to watch and after half an hour you'll have had more than enough, which is why I mention movies being about the story. It's the archetypal movie story - heroes and villains and the woman caught in the middle - done a million times before and given very short shrift here in the name of style.

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