Tropical Malady

Watch Tropical Malady

"Love is a malady without a cure..."
  • NR
  • 2004
  • 2 hr 5 min
  • 7.1  (6,301)
  • 81

Tropical Malady is a 2004 Thai film directed by Apichatpong Weerasethakul. The movie is split into two parts, the first half follows the budding romance between a soldier named Keng (played by Banlop Lomnoi) and a local man named Tong (played by Sakda Kaewbuadee). The two men spend their days exploring the lush forests of rural Thailand, getting to know each other and slowly falling in love.

The second half of the film takes a surprising turn as Keng heads off into the jungle alone to hunt a supernatural tiger that's been terrorizing villagers. The story shifts from a romantic drama to a surreal, hypnotic exploration of myth and spirituality. The hunter becomes the hunted, as Keng tracks the elusive tiger not only through the jungle but through time and reality itself.

The film is a beautifully shot meditation on love, nature, and spirituality. Weerasethakul masterfully blends the natural beauty of rural Thailand with striking, surreal images that blur the lines between reality and fantasy. The film is quiet and contemplative, with long stretches of silence punctuated by moments of intense emotion and unexpected twists.

The performances by Lomnoi and Kaewbuadee are both understated and powerful, conveying a deep sense of longing and connection between their characters. The chemistry between these two actors is palpable, and their scenes together are some of the most moving in the film.

The second half of the film, which takes on a more mystical and surreal tone, may be a bit jarring for some viewers. It's an unusual and experimental approach to storytelling that won't appeal to everyone. But for those who are willing to go along for the ride, the film offers a truly unique and unforgettable experience.

One of the standout elements of Tropical Malady is its use of sound. The quiet, meditative moments in the film are often made even more powerful by the absence of sound, while other scenes are filled with the sounds of the jungle or the hunter's footsteps. The use of music and ambient noise is sparse but effective, adding depth and texture to each scene.

Weerasethakul uses color and lighting to great effect in the film as well. The lush greens of the forest are juxtaposed with the harsh reds and blues of a neon-lit roadside restaurant, creating a striking contrast between nature and civilization. Later in the film, the colors become more muted and dreamlike, adding to the otherworldly atmosphere of the story.

The film's themes of love, addiction, and the search for connection are all explored in subtle and nuanced ways. The relationship between Keng and Tong is a tender and hopeful portrait of gay love in a culture that often shuns it. Meanwhile, Keng's journey into the jungle represents a search for something deeper and more meaningful than mere human connection. The film is a beautiful exploration of the human heart and its many mysteries.

Overall, Tropical Malady is a visually stunning and emotionally resonant film that will stay with you long after the credits roll. Its unique blend of romance, spirituality, and surrealism may not be for everyone, but for those who appreciate experimental cinema, it's a must-see. Weerasethakul's masterful direction and the excellent performances from the cast make this an unforgettable cinematic experience.

Tropical Malady is a 2004 drama with a runtime of 2 hours and 5 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.1 and a MetaScore of 81.

Tropical Malady
Where to Watch Tropical Malady
Tropical Malady is available to watch free on Kanopy. It's also available to stream, download on demand at . Some platforms allow you to rent Tropical Malady for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    2 hr 5 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.1  (6,301)
  • Metascore