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Brokeback Mountain has done more than just turn gay lobbyists into a bitter, Oscar whoring mob. It’s also powered up a new interest in cowboys among the independent film set. Ok I have no proof of that, but what other reason could Magnolia Pictures have for picking up a Thai cowboy movie?
Till now, the only Thai movies that have aroused any interest here in America have been Martial Arts flicks starring the great Tony Jaa. But Magnolia thinks they can make a go of it with Tears of the Black Tiger according to Variety. They bought it from Miramax, who’d acquired the rights to it nearly six years ago and then did nothing with it.
The film is described as a story of forbidden love in 1950s Thailand. It’s supposed to be part homage to and part parody of the American Western, and to tell its story Tiger uses bright colors, a “loud acting style”, big sets, and heavily stylized action. Magnolia calls it a “retro oddball”. While I’m not one to bother with IMDB user comments, the first one on their page for the movie caught my attention: “These cowboys have quite the fashion sense.” Alright, maybe my random Brokeback comparison was better than I thought.
Keep an eye out for Tears of the Black Tiger when it opens next year. Magnolia is starting it out in New York in January with a limited release elsewhere to follow.