Noy Thrupkaew

Noy Thrupkaew is a Prospect senior correspondent.

Recent Articles

Found in Translation

The New York Asian Film Festival is arguably most famous for its horror films. As The New Yorker recently documented, a critic staggered out of one of the more gruesome screenings several years ago, emitted a gurgle, and then dropped in a dead faint in the lobby. This year provided no exception to the high scary quotient. Along with art-house dramas, broad comedies, and martial arts- and Japanese comic-derived movies, the festival featured the likes of Juon: The Grudge , soon to be remade into a Sarah Michelle Gellar vehicle; Doppelganger , about an innocuous engineer whose evil double is taking over his life; and Marronnier , which features a mad genius who turns women into satanic killer dolls. The rising popularity of “J-Horror” in Hollywood would seem to necessitate a viewing of these movies -- but for a few things. First of all, the film-festival program billed Juon thusly: “If you thought The Ring was scary,” -- and I did, terribly so -- “please don't see this movie -- we can't...

Fahrenhaughty 9/11

A polemicist who draws on the techniques of investigative journalists. A director who unleashes the broadest comedy on the darkest subjects. A baseball cap–wearing Everyman, champion of minorities and the working class, who is really a rich white man -- Michael Moore is all these things, a contradictory figure who elicits many conflicting emotions, often within the same viewer. No surprise, then, that his latest film plays out that same tug-of-war, pulling an audience in one moment and then repelling the next. Fahrenheit 9/11 is Moore's most ambitious film yet, a no-holds-barred indictment of the war on terrorism. His goal is even more ambitious: As the director told The New York Times recently, he hopes his film will help unseat President Bush in the upcoming election. To that end, Moore has employed his usual tactics, plying found footage; man-on-the-street interviews; and large heaps of innuendo, self-righteousness, and genuine outrage and concern into a blistering attack on the...

Get Over Yourselves

Dear Margaret, I should be congratulating you -- target="outlink">Sundance airing the movie version of your latest one-woman show Cho: Revolution last Saturday was a big deal. But I'm writing for a different, less gracious reason, and I'm kind of nervous about it. When I started typing, the dorky little paperclip icon popped up on my computer screen and asked if I needed help writing my letter. I sent it away with a snort, but now I'm regretting it. That paperclip had my back, just like I would have had yours years ago, when you rose from the ashes of drug abuse, eating disorders, and the cancellation of a hellaciously mismanaged target="outlink">sitcom to bring us your live show I'm the One That I Want . Girl, I always loved you. I thought that I'm the One was especially good - - smart, sharp, unabashedly brave. You turned the experience of having your hair fall out in clumps and losing creative control over All-American Girl into wrenching comedy. You were like some crazy,...

Kangaroo Court

Fox has already gotten people to start voting -- can they make us like jury duty, too? That's the central question behind the network's latest offering, The Jury (Tuesdays, 9pm), a heavy-hitting drama with a fancy pedigree. Executive produced by the writers and producers (Tom Fontana, Barry Levinson, James Yoshimoto, and Jim Finnerty) behind influential shows like O z and Homicide: Life on the Street , the show features a new crime -- and a new jury to chew over that crime -- in every episode. Unfortunately, we already know those juries and those crimes. The Jury draws on its bipolar salacious/moralizing Fox origins, procedural-show formulas, and the inescapable oeuvre of Jerry Bruckheimer to create a familiar mishmash of a product. The déjà vu sets in from the opening sequences, when the show introduces its central crime. Filmed with a tired hand-held style, the scenes are edited into a washed-out, blue-tinted blur familiar to anyone who's watched, well, Homicide , Bruckheimer's CSI...

Monsters Inc.

Blighted seeds, tiny children hunched over sewing machines, a nation in convulsive riots over the price of water: What shadowy entity could be behind all these horrors? The corporation, according to the documentary of the same name. Created by Canadian filmmakers Mark Achbar, Joel Bakan, and Jennifer Abbott, and inspired by Bakan's book The Corporation: The Pathological Pursuit Of Profit And Power , the film takes on capitalism's juggernaut via two and a half hours of interviews with left-leaning academics, conservative CEOs, psychologists, corporate spies, and activists. Sweatshops, environmental degradation, political murders -- you name it and The Corporation covers it. The film ranges over the collateral damage of profit-making with the passionate zeal -- and the bewildering sprawl -- of a lefty political rally. Early on, the film is organized around an intriguing conceit: A speedy history introduces the legal development that helped launch the meteoric rise of the corporation;...

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