Why “The Love of Siam” is not a Gay Movie

28 10 2008

I’m really not good at reviewing movies. I judge them based on my giddy-giddy fangay point-of-view, usually concluding whether I like the movie or not. However, that does not mean I am a shallow film viewer. I do know how to pay attention to detail, especially when it comes to screenplay.

When I heard that “The Love of Siam” is being shown here in Manila for Cinemanila, I wasted no opportunity to watch it, wondering what all this “gay movie” stuff is all about. I researched about the film days before watching it. I am aware that TLOS was a huge hit in its home country of Thailand, having won several major awards and is even that country’s submission to the upcoming Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film. I am aware that the film involved two equally cute teen actors portraying gay roles (Witwisit “Pchy” Hiranyawongkul as Mew, and Mario Maurer as Tong). Although I am years ahead of being classified as a teenager, I find it interesting enough to watch and hopefully would not be dismayed by all the “gay” hype.

I watched the movie with a Kumareng Svelte and we both left the theater with smiles on our faces. (However, we were not as giddy as some females in the audience whenever they see Mario and Pchy together. We tried our best “not” to anticipate.) And although it featured gay love, I thought The Love of Siam is not a gay movie.

The film is a love story of many levels. It showed how love, whether it is for a lost daughter or for someone who does not love you in return, would drive people when it comes to their actions and decisions. But in the end, all of them held on to that love. Some of them ended up victorious, such as that between Sunee and Korn (Tong’s parents); while others had to bear the consequences of unrequited love, like how Ying (Mew’s next-door neighbor) felt towards both Mew and Tong. Some took love for granted, like Donut (Tong’s ex-girlfriend); but for Mew and Tong, love is something so precious yet fragile.

Both Svelte and I were affected by the movie in different ways. For Svelte, the line “As long as there is love, there is hope” would keep him longing that one day a knight in shining armor would sweep him off his feet. In my case, the scene where it hit me hard was when Tong told Mew that he could not be his boyfriend but that does not mean he does not love him. It dawned upon me that the lack of physical presence, or even the lack of a romantic relationship, should not be a deterrent in loving another person.

Overall, I fell in love with “The Love of Siam.”

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One response

28 02 2011
Santiago

I liked love of siam too, but why exactly is it not a gay movie? is a movie gay because it involves a gay relationship that actually flourishes, or because there are gay characters, or because the director or the writer is gay, or because it has a gay following? is love of siam not gay because it is a ‘love story on many levels,’ hence not *just* about gay love? which begs the question, is gay love not a story on many levels as well, transcending physical intimacy itself? just asking, and thanks for any reply. 😀

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