Buppah Rahtree (2003)


Starring Chermarn Poonyasak, Kris Srepoomseth, Chompoonuch Piyapanee, Sirisin Siripornsamatikul

Directed by Yuthlert Sippapak

It’s almost as if director Yuthlert Sippapak (Killer Tattoo) filmed three separate movies; a romantic drama, a comedy and a supernatural horror, and edited them together in post production. And guess what? It works!

The story revolves around the homely title character, Buppah, who falls prey to rich boy Ake’s sexual advances, who on a bet seduces then discards poor Buppah. When she becomes pregnant, Ake re-enters the picture just long enough to bring Buppah to the abortion clinic, then flees to England to go to school. Ouch! That’s what I call harshing on someone’s mellow. Unable to cope, Buppah takes her own life, and begins haunting the shit out of the apartment block she used to live in. She pulls out all the classics…banging on doors, popping unannounced into tenants’ bathrooms, and screaming maniacally in the middle of the night.

The comedy ensues when a string of charlatan exorcists each take a turn dispelling the troubled ghost, only to be sent packing by the tenacious Buppah. There’s even a Thai spoof of the infamous Captain Howdy scene from the Exorcist. But instead of wussing out like the Captain, Buppah throws down a good old-fashioned bo staff beatdown instead. The catholics haul ass outta there faster than you can say “The power of Christ compels us!”. When the exorcist equivalent to Jedi Knights show up from Cambodia, Buppah is really put to the test, and has to use every ghastly trick she knows to repel the buddhist ass kickers.

This movie has real scares, I kid you not. Buppah’s make-up bears more of a resemblance to a deadite then to the typical J-horror vengeful spook, and forget the whole crawling slowly towards her victim business… Buppah skips merrily, and quickly towards her terrified targets. The movie also appeases the gore junkies with a gooey little hacksaw scene, and finishes off with a particularly macabre ending. I highly suggest you pick up the DVD, settle in with a rice roll and peanut sauce, and see for yourself why this was a box office smash in Thailand in 2003.

4 out of 5

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