ONE TAKE ONLY
Reviewed by: Rees Savidis
Oxide Pang Chun
What's it about
Bank (Pawarith Mankolpisit), a low-rent drug pusher and Som (Wanatchada Siwapornchai), a student hooker, unite this mostly improvised morality tale set against the neon lights and urban squalor of modern-day Bangkok.
Is it good movie?
Firstly, it should be said that One Take Only is not a horror film; at least, not in any conventional sort of sense. There are no rubber-suited monsters or hockey-masked psychos bounding after big-titted teenagers here. It could be argued however, that One Take Only, with its depiction of street-level violence and drug-slinging and prostitution is more horrific than anything a scripter could dream up. It could definitely be argued, and rightfully so. One Take Only focused on the “true-life” horrors that are around us all the time, the stuff we don’t see (or don’t want to see), the stuff that happens across the street, away from the warmth and safety of our bedrooms. One Take Only shares the same space as something like Taxi Driver - without being anything like it.
The title One Take Only lends it’s self more to the filmmaking style of Director Oxide Pang Chun (the script was tossed, Winterbottom style, and the film largely improvised) rather than having any real association to the narrative – although maybe, sub-texturally, there is something behind the title. The idea that everyone, regardless of status, or worth, or significance, really only gets one take, one…kick at the can to do something worthwhile with our lives is a very central theme in One Take Only. What are you willing to do? How far will you go, if afforded the opportunity, to make a difference for yourself and your loved ones?
With its use of multiple filters and flashy transitions, One Take Only could be accused of being visually bloated at times, and while I do like the look of the film, all these tricks do seem at bit at odds with the overall goal of the film. The over-stylization does take away from what is essentially, a rather intimate character study.
Video / Audio
VIDEO: Tartan has provided us with a very clean and respectable 2.35:1 anamorphic transfer.
AUDIO: The 2 channel stereo mix offered here is perfectly serviceable.
If you can get past the fact that the closest One Take Only gets to being a horror film is that it was directed by the guy who made The Eye, you’ll be in for a perfectly entertaining and very well made piece of drama.