Described as a “bittersweet tale of love, memories and belonging” Hi-So is the second feature film from Thai director Aditya Assarat, following on from his 2007 drama feature Wonderful Town, which saw Geoff Andrew draw comparisons to master director Antonioni and acclaim Assarat “a singular voice in the making”. Set against the backdrop of a post-tsunami Thailand, Hi-So has once again seen Assarat the recipient of high critical praise, with Time Out proclaiming "those attuned to the quiet desolation of an Antonioni or Hou Hsiao-Hsien will find much to admire. A welcome discovery."
Returning to a post-tsunami Thailand after studying in the US, Ananda (played by leading Thailand based actor Ananda Everingham) lands a part in a new film and finds himself swept up in a whirlwind of success. When American girlfriend Zoe turns up to visit, she begins to feel shut out and the distance between them grows as Ananda becomes increasingly absorbed with his role in the film. His attention soon turns to May from the film’s production crew, and so as one relationship fades, another ignites. All the while, Ananda finds himself revisiting his past and reflecting on his present – from the building he grew up in and a Bangkok he once knew, to two cultures that he is now caught between. Here's the trailer:
Whilst the distributor hopes to announce additional venues for screenings of Hi-So later in March, the film is set to continue a trend of art-house and foreign features struggling even amidst critical praise to play for an audience, let alone find one, and the restriction to London screenings will naturally limit the film’s chance of discovering an audience. The distributor is inevitably hoping that a good turnout and interest from art-house and foreign film fans at the Curzon Renoir and Hackney Picturehouse over the next two days will provide an opportunity to secure Hi-So the opportunity to play for a broader UK audience, possibly expanding beyond London with the support of film-goers who have an opportunity to shape the fortunes of one of cinema's "singular voices".