The Legend of Suriyothai
For the film assignment, I decided to take a deeper look into the fascinating culture of Thailand. The film I watched and analyzed, The Legend of Suriyothai, was based on the true story of heroic Queen Suriyothai and the many sacrifices she made for her country. This story of loyalty, betrayal, and war portrayed many Thai cultural values and beliefs along with several universal messages.
The legend of Suriyothai, directed by Chatrichalerm Yukol, was one of the largest Thai productions in history. The movie is rumored to have cost between eight and twenty million dollars to produce, but because of the Thai Royal Family’s involvement, the real number has never been disclosed. The film was financed by Queen Sirikit, and she appointed the directorial position and the lead role of Queen Suriyothai to members of the royal family. This historical film was originally the Queen’s idea because she wanted the Thai people to be reminded of their history and to have a better understanding of what happened. The royal family was not the only Thai organization to be involved in the movie; Queen Sirikit employed the help of the Royal Thai Navy and the Royal Thai Army to make up the thousands of extras needed for the battle scenes and hundreds of elephants were shipped in from around the country and several surrounding countries. The film was shot in several locations throughout Thailand, and as a result of the royal connection it was allowed to be filmed in areas that were not open for public use and would have been impossible to use for anyone else (Anderson 2009). The story line of this film was about how Queen Suriyothai sacrificed her life to protect her husband so that he could continue his reign and save Ayutthaya from the Burmese attacks. I was attracted to this film because the culture is exotic and alluring, but also because heroic tales such as this one often have much more depth and meaning, and much more to learn, than many...
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