Luk Thung Signature (ลูกทุ่ง ซิกเนเจอร์, a.k.a. Love Beat) – Star-studded stories unfold to the toe-tapping beat of Thai country songs in this sprawling musical drama by producer-director Prachya Pinkaew (Ong-Bak, Tom-Yum-Goong. The stories include a brooding business executive (Krissada Sukosol Clapp) who is searching for the cleaning lady he heard singing while he was in the toilet. She’s played by Rungrat “Khai Mook The Voice” Mengphanit. Another story centers on a washed-up overweight pop singer (Chalitit “Ben” Tantiwut) who finds new popularity when he switches to luk thung. Other stars include The Voice Thailand Season 1 winner Tanon Jamroen as well as Siraphan Wattanajinda, Chaiyathat Lampoon, Sombat Metanee and Pitsamai Wilaisak, Sumet Ong-art, Su Boonliang and luk thung songwriter Sala Khunawut. Rated G
Love Beat ลูกทุ่งซิกเนเจอร์ (2016) PAL DVD5 – No subs
DVD / ISO / Untouched / 4.25 GB
“ลูกทุ่งซิกเนเจอร์” หนังเลิฟสตอรี่ สำหรับทุกหัวใจมีรัก เรื่องราวความรักหลากหลายรสชาติทั้งซาบซึ้ง อบอุ่น ยิ้มละมุนที่จะบรรเลงไปพร้อมบทเพลงลูกทุ่งคุ้นหูและเนื้อเพลงโดนใจ อาทิ บอกรักฝากใจ, เรารอเขาลืม, ความรักเจ้าขา, ขอจองในใจ, แต่งงานกันเถอะ ฯลฯ ซึ่งได้รับการเรียบเรียงให้ร่วมสมัยและอบอวลด้วยบรรยากาศความรักโดย “สุเมธ องอาจ” (สุเมธ แอนด์ เดอะปั๋ง) นักร้อง นักแต่งเพลงที่มีประสบการณ์ด้านดนตรีอย่างโชกโชน
Director Prachya Pinkaew goes back to the love of his life with a new film on Luk Thung
After a decade of working under pressure on such popular action films as “Ong Bak” and “Tom Yum Goong”, director Prachya Pinkaew says he’s thoroughly enjoyed taking time out to make a very different type of movie. His new work, “Luk Thung Signature”, will open in cinemas on February 11, just in time for Valentine’s Day.
A major fan of Thai country music, Prachya has wanted to make a film about luk thung for more than a decade. “I was already thinking about it when I started work on ‘Ong Bak’,” he tells XP. “But I had to put it to the back of my mind until I had finished ‘Tom Yum Goong 2’.”
“Luk Thung Signature” is centred on seven couples whose lives are portrayed through 13 luk thung songs. With stars that include singers Krissada Sukosol Clapp and Chalitit “Ben” Tantiwut, Prachya started his project by selecting 13 of his favourite country songs before developing the story with scriptwriter Kanittha Kwunyoo.
Ben plays Pete, a superstar singer who switches to luk thung after his popularity in the mainstream market goes into decline. Krissada plays Boy, the chief executive of a business who falls for the crystal clear vocals of an office cleaner (Rungrat “Khai Mook The Voice” Mengphanit)he hears while he is in the toilet and sets out to track her down through the song she was singing. Other stars include “The Voice” Season 1 winner Tanon Jamroen, Siraphan Wattanajinda, Chaiyathat (formerly Nawapol) Lampoon, Sombat Metanee and Pitsamai Wilaisak, plus supporting actors Sumet Ong-art, luk thung songwriter Sala Khunawut and Su Boonliang.
Prachya says he was inspired to weave seven couples into one story by the British Christmas movie “Love Actually”, even giving the project the working title “Luk Thung Actually.”
“Chronicling the lives of a lot of characters is not easy. We’ve have to cast the actors carefully so that the audience is easily able differentiate one from the other and ensure distinctive stories for each of the seven plots,” he says.
And in that he has succeeded, with plots as disparate as a pop singer turning to a new genre, a businessman falling for a maid’s voice, a young man attempting suicide by throwing himself from a flyover and a member of a film crew developing a crush on a special effects lady. Then there’s the female guard on BTS Skytrain who dreams of finding the perfect guy, a woman with a scar on her face who finds true love with a dessert vendor and an old couple who long for the early days of their relationship.
“My film is not like other luk thung-themed movies, which usually star real-life luk thung singers and focus on rural life. It’s a luk thung movie for urban people,” says Prachya.
While he acknowledges that Thai country music tends to be more popular among rural folk, he is irritated when the songs are written off as music for country bumpkins. “In fact the genre reflects the spirit of the Thai people and portrays feel-good and sincere characters through the lyrics,” he says.
To underline his point, he quotes writer Prapas Chonsalanon: “Classical music doesn’t look down on jazz, so jazz doesn’t do it to pop. Pop shouldn’t snub luk thung, luk thung doesn’t have to despise mor lam and mor lam shouldn’t feel that classical music is too sophisticated”.
“Those are exactly the sentiments I want to portray in this film. Every genre shares the same trait – it’s an artwork. But still many Thais feel offended by luk thung and deride it. But there’s luk thung music in all of us,” he says.
The 13 songs, all long time favourites, include such classics as Sodsai Rungphothong’s “Bork Rak Faak Jai”, Phongsee Worranuch’s “Nai Wa Mai Luem” and Sunaree Ratchasima’s “Rao Ror Khao Luem. And because the focus is on urban people, the music has been given a pop slant thanks to the efforts of singer Sumet Ong-art.
“I find Sumet has a great talent for singing luk thung numbers in his own style and posting them on YouTube.
“His music style is clean and has the sense of modern music,” he says.
In some ways, Prachya has returned to his roots with his new work. Few remember that long before the high-kicking “Ong Bak”, he made his debut with the dance music film “Rong Ta Laeb Plaeb” (“The Magic Shoe” ). That was back in 1992 and Prachya was working with RS Promotion at the time. The film also marked the company’s debut on the film market and starred the label’s singer Touch Na Takuathung and kid actor Boriboon Chanruang. Touch was the company’s top pop singer at the time and ironically, once his fame faded, he was assigned to sing luk thung songs.
“The idea for the project came to me while I was with Grammy. I thought about casting some of the many luk khrueng [Eurasian] actors around as luk thung singers. My former colleague, the writer Su Boonliang, give the project the name ‘Mon Rak Luk Khrueng’ but it just never got off the ground,” Prachya says.