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Phaen is a suburban young man with a great love for music. He never misses a chance to show off his voice at temple fairs in his village. It is at one of the fairs that he meets and falls in love with Sadao. On their wedding day, Phaen gives Sadao a transistor radio that the new family loves, and it also gives Phaen many a daydream of becoming a famous singer himself. Soon, Sadao is pregnant and it is hard for Phaen to leave home, but he has to enter military service. While there, he enters a singing contest, and winds up first runner-up. So he decides to leave the service and heads for Bangkok to follow his dream. He spends two years in a band that never goes anywhere, and eventually is forced to work in a sugarcane plantation. But a fight causes him to lose his job. As things go from bad to worse, he recalls his transistor radio with fondness, for it evokes in his mind much better and more peaceful times, when dreams were still possible.Written by
This is an excellent film. It is truly fascinating. As the narrator of the film says in the opening scene: this is the story of Phaen (Pan), who is a good guy, but whom the gods, for whatever reason, chose to give amounts of bad luck. In a sense, this is a very "black" film. The film starts with a summary of Pan courting Sadaw, before the two marry, and Sadaw's consequent pregnancy. However, due to his misfortune, Pan is drafted into the army, and from there, his misery continues. No matter what Pan does, and no matter how nicely he acts towards, and attempts to do "the right thing", it seems that he is just pulled deeper and deeper into it. He is pulled more and more towards the urban life, and the miserable conditions there, away from the romanticised peaceful life in the countryside, symbolised by Sadaw, and the transistor which he gave her as a token of her love, but which falls to the floor and breaks. Throughout the film, traditional Thai music is used to describe what is happening, the most frequently used being a very romantic one, whose lyrics are "don't forget, don't forget"--words that give hope to Pan, as he suffers his misfortunes in the big world, because his fate is cruel, and has decided that his dream, although seemingly so close to being realised, will remain simply a dream.
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