Pee Mak (Pee Mak Phrakanong): Movie Review

"Pee Mak" is the highest grossing film ever in Thailand. After watching the end product, we are not surprised at all. The film mixes wit, charm and a whole lot of laughs to make this 100 year old legend more palatable to a modern audience. Unfortunately, horror fans may feel that they got the shorter end of the stick as the film overcompensates its comedy at the expense of scares.

During the early Rattanakosin Era, Mak (Mario Maurer) was drafted in a war against foreigners. This forces him to leave behind his pregnant wife Nak (Davika Hoorne) alone at home in the village of Phra Khanong in Bangkok. While at war, he meets four soldier comrades who would later become his best friends. Meanwhile in Bangkok, Nak painfully struggles to give birth to their baby Dang and they both die. After the war, Mak and his friends return to Phra Khanong to stay over at his house and meet his beautiful wife Nak. After a series of uncanny events, his four friends deduce that Nak is actually a ghost and they must try their best to get Mak out of harm's way. This is easier said than done as rumors are circulating that Nak will kill anyone who knows the truth about her.

"Pee Mak" does not reinvent the wheel but it is effective in its comedy that whatever blemishes it has turns out to be forgivable. First thing we noticed with "Pee Mak" is its top notch production values. The sound was crisp and clear. The images even better and having their own unique style. We wonder if the Thais could do something this amazing why can't our local film outfits match them? Additionally, what's most memorable is the four best friends with Pee Mak and the hilarity they bring forth. Each character has their own unique personality which also translates to different kinds of reaction to each situation. One may act tough but the other might kick his buddy believing he was a ghost but eventually, every action will translate to much laughter. It's amazing how the film's comedy (even with a Thai context) retains its effectiveness. Nothing is lost in translation that's for sure. Although the film was funny, it wasn't scary. It had its moments but these were few and far between. Finally, we also felt that Mario Maurer's character of Mak was annoying. There's something about his character being all so weak and cuddly that just gets to your nerves. In the end, "Pee Mak" is well-worth a watch. Just don't expect to be scared out of your wits or even just plain scared.

Rating: 4 reels

Why you should watch it:
- no humor was lost in translation
- contains lovable characters

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- not much of thrills and fears in here

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