Syndromes and a Century

Dir. Apichatpong Weerasethakul
2006 | Thailand | 105 min | PG | 35mm | In Thai with English subtitles

Date: Sat 29 October

Time: 1:30pm

Venue: The Alliance Française

In Syndromes and a Century, filmmaker and installation artist Weerasethakul explores the complex web of human relationships and the elliptical nature of memory, starting with the love life of a young female doctor who works in a rural ‘70s-era hospital. A new doctor there confesses his love for her. She, however, recalls fondly a burgeoning relationship with an orchid breeder, who in turn sees her as no more than a friend. Later the same dialogue is reprised with the same characters in a starkly contemporary and urban setting, with different outcomes.

Based on the stories of Weerasethakul’s doctor parents, the first and second parts of the film focus on his mother’s and his father’s perspectives respectively. These are interspersed with loosely connected stories, characters and meditative long takes of their physical environment. The Thai Board of Censors ordered four cuts to the film, prompting the director to eventually replace the scenes with scratched celluloid in a show of resistance against censorship.

Awards: Venice Film Festival – Nominated for Golden Lion.