I know I’m late to the party, but anyway.
I missed Syndromes and a Century when it showed at the Tiff in 2006. So much has been written about the film, it is on so many top ten lists… It took over a year until the movie by Apichatpong Weerasethakul was screened in Toronto again. I finally saw it last weekend.
Sometimes I think all movies should have two halves. The first half of Syndromes is set in a rural hospital in Thailand, maybe in the 70ties, the second part at a modern day, urban clinic. Both halves begin with a job interview of a new doctor and almost the same dialog.
You might think you slipped through a wormhole while watching the film or was the narrative just mirrored? Is the total eclipse of the sun the first parts version of a black intake vent sucking up smoke in the later part?
The next time, I want the see Syndromes backwards. Back and forth through the wormhole. This should provide the full experience.
And there is the subtle and sometimes absurd humor of a drunken tv doctor, the gay monk who wants to be a dj, the orchid expert. The camera does not move a lot and I guess that adds to the calmness the movie conveys.
If you have a chance to see Syndromes and a Century, don’t hesitate.
Filmmaker’s website incl. Behind the scenes