Wonderful Town (2007)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

"Wonderful Town" is a fictional story set against a real-life background. Aditya Assarat's feature debut takes place in Takua Pa, a coastal area in southern Thailand that lost more than 8,000 habitants when the Asian Tsunami struck in late 2004. Caused by a 9.3 magnitude Indian Ocean earthquake on Dec. 26, this natural disaster affected 15 countries across the globe and was responsible for the death of over 225,000 people. Three years later, Takua Pa, once the site of a thriving community, still struggles with this collective trauma. And, amidst the city's reconstruction, an architect mysteriously arrives from the cosmopolitan Bangkok. Ton, the only person from his firm willing to re-locate to this desolate place, comes to supervise one of the city's many construction sites. As he looks for a place to live, he meets Na. As such, to view "Wonderful Town" as a reaction to the Tsunami is perhaps to miss the film's larger point. Here, this traumatic natural disaster also functions as a point of departure for the film's assertions about the relationship--and many parallels--between humans and the so-called natural world.
Art House & International , Drama
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Critic Reviews for Wonderful Town

All Critics (21) | Top Critics (7)

There's a folksy majesty to Wonderful Town, born of its leisurely pace, pastoral views of idyllic scenery and a storytelling drive set only slightly faster than slow motion. It recalls a lot of rustic, independent English-language films of the '90s

Full Review… | August 15, 2008
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

A sensitive love story from Thailand set against the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami.

Full Review… | July 25, 2008
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

It's no small feat to pull off as sweet and sensitive a romance as that between Na and Ton, and something rarer yet to suffuse such affections into a poem of wounded landscape.

July 18, 2008
New York Times
Top Critic

This delicate, delightful and nearly note-perfect debut feature from young Thai director Aditya Assarad offers more evidence of the tremendous film renaissance underway in East Asia.

Full Review… | July 18, 2008
Top Critic

Occasionally, Assarat -- who studied in the US -- drops a hint about sinister times to come, but nothing prepares the audience for what does happen.

Full Review… | July 18, 2008
New York Post
Top Critic

Assarat has little to say about the role of hope in post-traumatic living.

Full Review… | July 16, 2008
Village Voice
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Wonderful Town


What I thought would be a uplifting film full of heart and emotion turns out to be a dull and uninspired plunge into depression. I don't want to give anything away, but I'll just say the end really makes you feel like the whole thing was pointless. Seriously, why even make a movie like this? The romance between the two main characters is kind of boring, and one never really feels like it's truly meant to be. This makes the motives of everyone involved seem meaningless as well.

Peter Nordgren
Peter Nordgren

Wonderful Town is set in a Thai village that was devastated by the 2004 Tsunami. A young architect is sent to oversee the rebuilding effort that has started in the village. He soon falls in love with a local girl. The film is slow and thoughtful. It builds upon the romance whilst looking at it from a distance. Both parties are very cautious about getting close to each other. The locals soon disapprove of the relationship, it upsets the balance and releases pent up anger from the community that perhaps feels abandoned. The ending is shocking and even sickening. It comes suddenly, as such an act would. Wonderful Town is a bit to thoughtful for it's own good. There's a great story and some fascinating themes here, but first it makes us sit through a generic love story, one that takes up too much screen time.

Luke Baldock
Luke Baldock

Super Reviewer

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