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Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (2010)

Loong Boonmee raleuk chat (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Fantasy | 1 September 2010 (France)
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Dying of kidney disease, a man spends his last, somber days with family, including the ghost of his wife and a forest spirit who used to be his son, on a rural northern Thailand farm.

Writers:

Phra Sripariyattiweti (inspired by the book of), Apichatpong Weerasethakul
10 wins & 20 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Thanapat Saisaymar Thanapat Saisaymar ... Boonmee
Jenjira Pongpas Jenjira Pongpas ... Jen
Sakda Kaewbuadee ... Tong
Natthakarn Aphaiwonk Natthakarn Aphaiwonk ... Huay
Geerasak Kulhong Geerasak Kulhong ... Boonsong
Wallapa Mongkolprasert Wallapa Mongkolprasert ... Princess
Kanokporn Tongaram Kanokporn Tongaram ... Roong (as Kanokporn Thongaram)
Samud Kugasang Samud Kugasang ... Jaai
Sumit Suebsee Sumit Suebsee ... Soldier
Mathieu Ly Mathieu Ly ... Farmer
Vien Pimdee Vien Pimdee ... Farmer
Akachai Aodvieng Akachai Aodvieng
Prakasit Padsena Prakasit Padsena
Nikom Kammach Nikom Kammach
Chophaka Chaiyuchit Chophaka Chaiyuchit
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Storyline

Suffering from acute kidney failure, Uncle Boonmee has chosen to spend his final days surrounded by his loved ones in the countryside. Surprisingly, the ghost of his deceased wife appears to care for him, and his long lost son returns home in a non-human form. Contemplating the reasons for his illness, Boonmee treks through the jungle with his family to a mysterious hilltop cave - the birthplace of his first life. Written by Lament

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Thailand | UK | France | Germany | Spain | Netherlands

Language:

Thai | French | Lao

Release Date:

1 September 2010 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$23,540, 6 March 2011, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$183,605, 7 August 2011
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It was listed second on Film Comment magazine's Best Films of 2011 list. See more »

Goofs

The first time a ghost appears, during dinner, the nephew passes the ghost a glass of water. You can see the ghost image superimposed over the nephew's arm when he places the glass of water on the table. See more »

Connections

Featured in At the Movies: Cannes Film Festival 2010 (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Princess Poem "Rewatta-Leelawadee"
Vocals by Namthip Meaungmaha
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Light on story, high on contemplative surrealism.
23 November 2014 | by garcalejSee all my reviews

I'll be frank. Whether or not you enjoy this movie will depend largely on whether or not you are a die hard film buff or a casual movie goer looking for a story. If you are the later, then aside from the eerie sight of the red eyed Monkey Spirits, you will come away disappointed.

That said, there is much in Uncle Boonmee to like, but like the Buddhist aesthetic the film is steeped in, you have to be ready for it. Because this is one film that demands a lot of patience of the viewer.

Set in rural Isan Province, Thailand, the story follows the last days of a well to-do farmer, the titular Boonmee, who is dying of a terminal illness. Like all dying men, Boonmee can't help but wax philosophic, both on the nature of death itself and on his own past mistakes, and one night while eating with his family is suddenly and abruptly joined by two spirits, the first of his dead wife, Huay, the second that of his missing son, Boonsong, who has inexplicably been transformed into a black monkey. Anyone even remotely familiar with the prior work of Director Weerasethakul (try saying that with a mouthful of marbles), particularly Tropical Malady, will know that such surrealism is a common theme in his films, with its signature mix of traditional Thai Buddhism and animist lore. As in Tropical Malady, the day belongs to the living and the mundane, but night brings on ghosts, animal spirits, the shades of ancestors, and the inner musings and anxieties of Weerasethakul's characters.

The film itself feels much like a Buddhist temple; with its long uninterrupted and unadorned shots, and its devotion to capturing trivial moments, it is not so much a vehicle for storytelling as contemplation. The last film to be shot with celluloid as opposed to digital, it is the director's self-admitted funerary ode to a dying medium.


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