Thailand / 130 mins / World Premiere – Busan Film Festival
Directed by Chonlasit Upanigkit / Pop Pictures
Neung is a freshman in college. She did poorly on the national entrance exam so ended up with her last choice, the Sports Science Faculty. The film follows the intertwining lives of Neung and her new friends as they each say goodbye to their youth and struggle to embrace an uncertain future. The film is an epic of Thai college life made as the thesis project of the director at his university in the outskirts of Bangkok.
“I don’t really know”. These are the most common words from a college student’s mouth. It was this feeling of uncertainty that I wanted to focus on in my thesis project. I even asked all my friends, “Why are you making a film?” to which the most common answer I received was, “So I can get my degree.” Even though it was an honest answer, I was still stunned. The way that we college students choose to deal with uncertainty is just to go along with it day by day.
I chose the Sports Science Faculty as the background of the film because I remember in Science High School, this was the faculty that we average students always picked as our last choice if we happened to bomb the national entrance exam. I wrote the script based on the scenario of a student who really did end up at the Sports Science Faculty; would she find meaning and direction in her studies, or would she just go along with it day by day?
Finally, I chose an average student as my main character because this feeling of youthful uncertainty is universal and I thought it would be best represented not by an elite or wealthy student, but by an average student who is most identifiable with audiences and other Thai students in general. In life, everyone must jump in and swim, even though we cannot turn back and swimming forward doesn’t guarantee any satisfactory destination either.
Chonlasit Upanigkit was born in 1990. He graduated from Silpakorn University with a major in Film. He began working as a professional editor on many projects, including music videos, commercials, and films. He edited Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit’s 36, which won the New Currents Award at Busan 2012. The following year he edited Nawapol’s follow-up Mary is Happy, Mary is Happy, for which he won Best Editing at the national Suppanahongs Awards and national Critics Assembly Awards. ‘W’ is his first feature film.