Director:

Writer:

(screenplay)
Reviews
1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

7 Letters (2015)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

An emotive anthology by seven of Singapore's most illustrious filmmakers, celebrating SG50 through the lives and stories of Singaporeans. Directed by Eric Khoo, Jack Neo, K. Rajagopal, Royston Tan, Tan Pin Pin, Boo Junfeng, Kelvin Tong.

Directors: Junfeng Boo, Eric Khoo, and 5 more credits »
Stars: Faizal Abdullah, Aric Hidir Amin, Fatin Amira
Apprentice (2016)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Aiman is a 28-year-old Malay correctional officer who is recently transferred to the territory's top prison. He lives with his older sister Suhaila in a modest housing estate. At his new ... See full summary »

Director: Junfeng Boo
Stars: Firdaus Rahman, Wan Hanafi Su, Mastura Ahmad
Mee Pok Man (1996)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A painfully shy noodle-shop owner and a prostitute have a chance encounter when destiny arrives in the form of a car accident.

Director: Eric Khoo
Stars: Joe Ng, Michelle Goh, Kay Tong Lim
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

Boys On Film goes down under to bring a fresh batch of funny and touching tales courtesy of our Aussie and Kiwi cousins, while from the USA and Hawaii to Singapore via Korea several more ... See full summary »

Directors: Brent Anbe, Christopher Banks, and 6 more credits »
Stars: John Batchelor, Bren Foster, Diana Glenn
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A former military officer makes a film about a man he encountered in Tanjong Rhu, a secluded cruising ground. From up-and-coming Singaporean director Boo Junfeng (of Cannes Critics Week and... See full summary »

Director: Junfeng Boo
Stars: Nick Shen, Scott Lei, Yann Yann Yeo
Three Times (2005)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Three stories set in three times, 1911, 1966 and 2005. Two actors play the two main characters in each story.

Director: Hsiao-Hsien Hou
Stars: Qi Shu, Chen Chang, Fang Mei
Be with Me (2005)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

"Be with me" consists of three stories of love vs. solitude : 1)An aging, lonesome shopkeeper doesn't believe in life any more since his wife died. But he is saved from desperation by ... See full summary »

Director: Eric Khoo
Stars: Theresa Poh Lin Chan, Chiew Sung Ching, Lawrence Yong
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A glimpse at the lives of two petty criminals in Taipei.

Director: Hsiao-Hsien Hou
Stars: Hsiang Hsi, Kuei-Ying Hsu, Annie Shizuka Inoh
Betrayal (2012)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A romance between two strangers who discover that their partners are lovers.

Director: Kirill Serebrennikov
Stars: Albina Dzhanabaeva, Dejan Lilic, Svetlana Mamresheva
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Junfeng Boo
Stars: Gina Berenguer, Pilar Prats, Miquel Saura Montserrat
Homecoming (2008)
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

A boy returns to Singapore from his studies in Europe, two days before he is enlisted into the army. A sensitive depiction of an 18-year-old's struggle between national duties and personal liberty.

Director: Junfeng Boo
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Director: Eran Kolirin
Stars: Mili Eshet, Noam Imber, Shiree Nadav-Naor
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Bobbi Chen
Elena Chia
Bee Thiam Tan ...
Army officer
Pin Pin Tan ...
Doctor
Joshua Tan Wei-En ...
(as Joshua Tan)
Edit

Storyline

Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

26 August 2010 (Singapore)  »

Also Known As:

Castelo de Areia  »

Box Office

Budget:

$330,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A Nutshell Review: Sandcastle
19 August 2010 | by (Singapore) – See all my reviews

If family dramas are your cup of tea, then Boo Junfeng's maiden feature film will be right up your alley. Of the films released this year so far, it is no wonder that Sandcastle made it to the Cannes Critics Week. It is a mature piece of cinema as if under the steady guidance of an assured veteran, with quality in all departments. But this is no castle built in the sky. Boo Junfeng has cut his teeth with a series of well liked, and obviously well traveled and award winning short films, so it's only a matter of time before we see him embarking on a feature film project.

This is the story of the life of the Tan family, where we follow the life and adventures of En, a junior college student who will be enlisting to the army by year's end. It's a perfect demonstration, and I suppose since Boo was a teenager not too long ago as well, of the rites of passage a Singaporean male at 18 years of age undergo, from education to the lull period waiting for enlistment, that taking up of a part time job for additional income and to pass time, the learning how to drive and the sweet encounters with the opposite sex, and death even, as this is roughly about the age where grandparents say adieu.

I can easily identify with En, and I suppose that's almost the case with many other males out there, as he goes through his teenage life not quite unlike many of us in Singapore. What more, I come from the same junior college, so it's something of a blast to see a small scene shot on campus grounds, and the temasek green uniform. I can't remember if there was a choir group during my time, but I suppose they did exist.

The story picks up when En has to stay with his grandparents for 2 weeks during the renovation of his home, while his choir and music teacher mom (Elena Chia) scoots off for a China vacation with her new beau Wilson (played by Samuel Chong), a military colonel whom En detests. It is this time that En learns, through his grandfather's safely kept film negatives, more about his father Boon (Andrew Seow in what's mostly a photographic cameo) and the student leader he was, something like En is which we see from the plague on display in his room, but only more engaged and fervent in his ideologies and beliefs, which we will learn how they take its toil as the film unfolds.

The first salvo gets fired here in highlighting this 50s to early 60s era about the Chinese student protesters, and along the way throughout the narrative, this constant probing a section of our history that has been swept under the carpet, creeps slowly into the story in non-provocative fashion as En becomes incessantly obsessed with knowing more, as does little commentaries on the nuances of religion such as death-bed conversions, and the frowning upon the participation of customs and rites from a relative's beliefs. Perhaps this may spark some thought with the younger generation audiences to try and find out more, and for those from the era to begin opening up to talk about it when a budding interest in that era begins to grow.

But it's not all serious without some touches of comedy, which come in feather light doses at the right places, where the loudest guffaw comes courtesy of Wilson providing a chest- thumping presentation on National Day Parade preparations, which incidentally in real life, Boo Junfeng also had a contributing hand in this year's parade. I wonder whether he had encountered similar gaffes! The romance bit between En and Chinese neighbour Ying (Bobbi Chen) also provides some relief from the heavier themes, though their expected sexual awakening (hey, two hot blooded teenagers alone at home) provides the other fulcrum which gives the narrative another push forward.

Managing to coax convincing, natural performances that does away with exaggeration is one of the key major plus points in the film, where surprisingly the leads Joshua Tan and Bobbi Chen are making their film acting debuts, balanced with veterans such as Elena Chia and Samuel Chong. Language delivery for a local film tends to be cringeworthy, but Sandcastle successfully blended a mix of languages without coming across as forced or too artificially polished, especially when one speaks in one language, and a reply comes in the form of another; worked perfectly well here.

Production values are absolutely great, with nicely designed sets and art direction in place to make it all look like the 90s. I think we should begin to sit up and take note of Director of Photography Sharon Loh, as she conjures up beautiful images captured of metropolitan Singapore without resorting to having them all look like banal tourism ads. The song Home also gets a slower, more purposeful spin and beat, as do other Nationalistic songs that get performed by En's school choir. I felt Home's new sound rang home accurately on the exploration of the titular concept, and how the Tans have to live and love how they do.

I'll go as far to honestly say that Sandcastle is Singapore's answer to Japan's Tokyo Sonata by Kiyoshi Kurosawa. It deals with familiar family issues that are central and familiar to a local audience, yet dealing with universal themes that can reach out to the bigger world out there. If you've found this year's commercial releases to be somewhat lacking in depth, then Sandcastle is that film to make you realize that we do have talented filmmakers in our midst with courage to tackle taboo issues in a manner that's non confrontational, yet set to make you think.

This year's best Singapore film, setting a high quality benchmark for others to follow.


7 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
French review Niko06
Discuss Sandcastle (2010) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?