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Sawatwong Palakawong Na Autthaya
Intriguing premise is poorly handled and lapses into absurdity
I spent a lot of my childhood poring over classical mythology, to a nerdish extent. So nymphs of all sorts are very interesting to me, one of my favourite paintings is John William Waterhouse's Hylas and The Nymphs, I find myself thinking of it when I'm in the dentist's chair, a happy place to go to! I've also become acquainted with the darker side of the tradition as an adult, for example Ezra Pound's poem April.
Simply put, this film should have been right up my street. The opening scene of the film indeed was very interesting, something I enjoyed a lot. There's a scene in Philippe Garrel's experimental movie Le révélateur where the characters are fleeing across a landscape and the camera separates and meets back up with them later on in the scene. It reminds me of ice dancing, where the couple who are skating split and rejoin. That's how the first scene of Nymph works in cinematographic terms, where here the eerie Thai forest is the landscape. So that's a success.
From there on the movie unfortunately went downhill. The couple in this film, Nop and May are completely flat-lining in terms of interest, they flop through the movie as if they've just awoken from a coma. We don't get any sort of sense of why they are attracted to each other, the acting is not expressive at all, the film unfortunately becomes boring.
I'm worried about the level of control Ratanaruang had on this movie, because it seems to fall into fairly boring and generic horror movie tropes, and I find it hard to believe that he's done that on purpose. I felt almost like I'd watched Ring 3 by the end of it such were the boredom levels with such a tired and clichéd movie.
The secrecy and furtiveness with which the nymph was filmed were (a flash in the corner of the eye now and then at the start), in my opinion, totally unnecessary, worn out stuff that you could see in Blair Witch Project, or really any generic horror movie.
I felt that there was enough good material here to edit into a highly successful short. But no way was there enough for a feature film. The ending, painfully, was really rather silly.
11 of 23 people found this review helpful.
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