Article: 10 Internationally Celebrated Thai Movies

Thailand is a country known for its breathtaking beaches and landscapes. The country is filled with rich culture and heritage. The Thai industry makes sure that they show their uniqueness through their films. If you're unaware of the Thai entertainment industry, then you're truly missing out on some great masterpieces. From great storytelling to exceptional acting, numerous films in the Thai industry have received international acclaim. Here is the list of such 10 Thai films. So, grab your popcorn and dive into Thai cinema!

1. Bad Genius

This film is so cleverly crafted that you won't be able to move from your seats. Bad Genius is a thrilling heist drama about Lynn (Chutimon Chuengcharoensukying) a high school student who helps other students cheat in exams in exchange for money. With an engaging plot, the characters played by the cast, especially the protagonist made this an eye-opening film about our education system. Bad Genius dominated the year 2017. The film won around 12 awards including Best Picture, Best Actor, and Best Actress in Suphannahong National Film Awards. You can watch this on Netflix.

2. Shutter

The film was a box office success making it the best horror flick ever made by the Thailand industry. In 2008, a remake in English of the same name was made by Masayuki Ochiai. A photographer and his girlfriend start experiencing paranormal activities after they face an accident. There are classic jump scares, an eerie atmosphere, and sound. The film has won several awards in many international film festivals. With many remakes in Telugu, Tamil, and even Hindi, you can watch the original "Shutter" on Netflix.

3. Tropical Malady

The film is divided into two parts. In part one, the story of two lovers, one of them is a soldier, is depicted. In part two, the storytelling completely shifts from a real-world story to a mystical one. A hunter is on a quest to find a shape-shifting spirit. The whole film is made with an artistic approach. There are minute details from landscapes to every character that are being paid attention to. It won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival and became the first Thai film to receive a prize at one of the “Big Three" film festivals.

4. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives

Inspired by the 1983 book A Man Who Can Recall His Past Lives, "Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives" is about reincarnation, spirituality, and past lives. The main character, Uncle Boonmee, has the ability to recall his past lives. With the beautiful landscape of the Thai countryside, this movie is recommended for those who are looking for a thought-provoking, deep-meaning storyline. The film won Palme d'Or at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival and became the first Thai film to do so. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives is available on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

5. Hunger

Recently released, Hunger is a worth-watching Thai film by Netflix. If you love intense drama like The Menu then this is for you. Another masterpiece, starring Chutimon Chuengcharoensukying as a street-food cook who is invited to join the kitchen of an infamous Chef Paul. Every single cast gave their best. It is a movie you don't wanna miss out on.

6. Bangkok Traffic Love Story

It is a light-hearted Thai rom-com. The film follows Mei Li, a young woman who works as a traffic officer in Bangkok, and how her life changes when she meets Lung. The film showcases the day-to-day life of living in a city like Bangkok. It takes a humorous approach to depict the struggles and adventures of city life. The chemistry between the lead actors is worth mentioning. Financially, the film was a success. Bangkok Traffic Love Story is available on Netflix.

7. Phobia 2

Phobia 2 is a sequel to the successful Phobia (2008). There are very few horror movies in which the second part is actually better than the first one. Phobia 2 showcases five different stories, each directed by different directors. It offers the thrills and chills we expect from a good Thai horror.  It became one of the highest-earning films on the opening day in the history of Thailand's movies. This flick should definitely be on the list of horror movie lovers. You can watch this on Netflix.

8. Last Life In The Universe

Last Life in the Universe is a romantic crime film. It stars Japanese actor Tadanobu Asano and Thai actor Sinitta Boonyasak in the main lead. The interesting thing about the film is that it is trilingual. The main characters switch between Thai, Japanese, and English as per the requirement. You will understand it once you see the movie. It talks about the unpredictability of life. The movie is awarded two times by the Thailand National Film Association Awards, and the Japanese actor won the best actor award at the Venice Film Festival. It was even selected as the official submission for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 2003. It is a recommended watch that is available for free on platforms like Internet Archive.

9. The Love Of Siam

"The Love of Siam" is a romantic Thai movie about two childhood friends who are reunited after years of being apart. As they reunite, their feelings deepen to more than just being friends. This movie is a beautiful example of the societal expectations and flood of emotions we all go through. It also talks about the importance of friendship and self-acceptance. Although there were some controversies still, the film did well commercially. It became critically acclaimed. Some critics even called the film "Groundbreaking." Love of Siam dominated the 2007 Thai Awards and was the official submission to the 81st Academy Awards from Thailand.

10. Ong-Bak: Muay Thai Warrior

It is maybe the most globally known Thai film. The main character played by Tony Jaa in "Ong-Bak" proved to be the most successful role in his career. He became internationally renowned for playing a Muay Thai Warrior (Muay Thai is a traditional Thai martial art also known as Thai boxing). The action sequences are worth watching. There are also two prequels of the film that is available on Netflix.