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Richard E. Grant,
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Incoherent, unpredictable, mystical, yet undoubtedly original, "Uncle Boonmee Who Call Recall His Past Lives" is a pseudo-profound cinematic venture that reeks with allegory and mythical undertones. After watching this film, I've come to a conclusion that it is certainly not for everyone.
Despite its strange recurring themes about supernatural beings, spirits, Buddhist philosophy, karma, and reincarnation, it will bathe you with its gentleness and natural ornateness. It is intimate and surprisingly elegant, though not without its flaws.
Much like Terrence Malick's "Tree of Life," this motion picture lacks a linear narrative. It doesn't have what most of us would require from a movie: a plot. It heavily relies on hypnotic images captured into still wide frames that often drag longer than the easily-bored viewer can bear.
Then there's the noticeable absence of a musical score. You never get to hear music until the last few minutes of the film; all you'll hear besides the dialogues are crickets, the rustling of leaves, a water buffalo, the sound of an electric fly swatter zapping flying bugs, footsteps, a waterfall, and a talking catfish that made love to a disfigured princess.
Simple and ambitious; primitive and modern; eerie and comforting; senseless and driven; and dull and brilliant, this Thai film gives you a one-of-a-kind viewing experience. If you are into esoteric art films, this is something I would highly recommend. If you loathe movies that seem to have no meaning, then this is not for you.
Confounding as it is, "Uncle Boonmee..." is a film that doesn't need to be understood; it simply has to be FELT.
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