Mysterious Object at Noon (2001) - Rotten Tomatoes

Mysterious Object at Noon (2001)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

An adventurous experiment in cinematic storytelling, this low-budget independent Thai feature is structured like the Surrealist idea of the "exquisite corpse." One person begins a story, and a succession of others continue it in whatever way they see fit. Director Apichatpong Weerasethakul gleans his participants from all over the Thai countryside. The story, begun by a young woman with a personal history harrowing enough for its own movie, concerns a wheelchair-bound boy and his enigmatic tutor Dogfar. As the tale is passed along between a variety of rural characters (including, at one point, a traveling dance troupe who perform it for an audience), everything from kidnappings to space aliens are added to the mix. The film alternates between the storytellers and the story they tell, along with "behind the scenes" shots and other documentary footage that blur the line between fiction and non-fiction and make the film itself a witty, quirky exploration of the very notion of storytelling. ~ Tom Vick, Rovimore
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Documentary, Art House & International, Special Interest
Directed By:
Written By: Apichatpong Weerasethakul
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 21, 2003

News & Interviews for Mysterious Object at Noon

Critic Reviews for Mysterious Object at Noon

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (3)

Full Review… | January 23, 2003
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 23, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

A tale constructed by many where the camera slowly builds up a story of many voice and methods. [Full review in Spanish]

Full Review… | April 28, 2016
El Pais

... it's wonderfully different from any American film...

Full Review… | October 4, 2007
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

This masterpiece from new Thai director Apichatpong Weerasethakul blends fiction and nonfiction into a form of cinema previously forged by Hou Hsiao-hsien and Abbas Kiarostami.

Full Review… | March 1, 2004
Combustible Celluloid

Audience Reviews for Mysterious Object at Noon


Very cool little film done with the "exquisite corpse" idea of continuing a story. It's a little hard to understand at first because it doesn't have a traditional sort of narrative. It's not as good as the directors later films but it possesses a lot of the motifs and signatures that the director would later employ. Cool for fans of the director but this is a very artsy/talky film. Not one for more casual audiences.

The first feature by Weerasethakul who won Canne 2010. A very innovative film which bravely challenges to break the wall between fiction and non-fiction. This film can be said as a "documentary about a story" or a "story about a documentary." I understand that many people would say that this film is hard to understand, but I don't think so - it's not hard but sometimes too "mysterious" (aim of the director is uncertain). Because the topic is really good, I think this film could be much more entertaining actually...

The Mysterious Object at Noon, often described as a surrealist film, is one of those cinematic experiences viewers either love or hate; it is one in which there is no middle ground. While there is no real genre into which this movie falls, it is perhaps best described as a documentary, in which Weerasethakul travels deep into the jungles of Thailand collecting variations on a simple folktale. The thing is, the film also examines the ways in which Weerasethakul asking about the tale changes it, and at times actively influences this, turning it in some ways into a game of exquisite corpse. You will either be bored senseless or fascinated.

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