Tuesday, December 01, 2009


The EU Film Festival in Bangkok ended on Sunday. There are many problems happening during the festival, including some serious ones. At first I didn't intend to write about these problems, because they don't frustrate me so much. But then something happening yesterday changed my mind. I feel so frustrated with some staff of the SF World Cinema that I think I have to write about it.

The most serious problem of SF WORLD CINEMA I found happened on Sunday, Nov 29. I bought a ticket for SPLINTERS, of which the showing is listed as 15.00 hrs. I arrived at the ticket collector's booth around 15.10 hrs, but a ticket collectress there didn't let me in. She said CINEMA 14 wasn't open yet. I also saw that the doors of CINEMA 14 were closed. So I waited in front of the ticket collector's booth. I noticed that there were also a group of people waiting there, too.

A few minutes later there was an announcement that CINEMA 12 , which showed DISNEY'S A CHRISTMAS CAROL, was open, and people there formed a very long queue to have their tickets collected and their bags searched, so that they could go inside. A man also came to help the staff to collect the tickets at the booth.

I think at around 15.15 hrs I saw a foreigner who is a frequent film festival goer arrived there. He got into the queue. I guessed he bought a ticket for SPLINTERS like me. I didn't tell him that CINEMA 14 wasn't open because I had never talked to him before. To my surprise, I saw the staff collected his ticket and he went inside CINEMA 14.

Then I knew something wrong had happened. I hurriedly got into the queue, and the male staff collected my ticket. I went inside CINEMA 14 at around 15.18 hrs and found that the film had already started. I didn't know for how long it had started. I felt very angry. CINEMA 14 must have been opened since 15.00 hrs, and the film may have been started at around 15.08-15.09 hrs, but the female staff at the booth didn't let me in. She didn't tell me the truth. She made me lose my chance to see the first 10 minutes of SPLINTERS for no reason at all.

I ran back to the booth and complained about what happened. I nearly cried. What have I done to deserve this? The female staff at the booth seemed to show no remorse at all for what she did. I heard her saying something like "I just didn't know it". The male staff there, who looks like one of the managers, said that he would reprimand the female staff. So I decided to go back to the cinema and watched SPLINTERS.

What would happen if that foreigner didn't arrive at 15.15 hrs? Then, I would have waited there until 15.30 hrs, until I found out that the film had already started a long time ago.

The upcoming British Film Festival will also be held at SF World Cinema. I hope this kind of problems won't be repeated again.

My suggestions for people who want to go to SF World Cinema:

If a staff doesn't let you go inside, claiming that the theater isn't open yet, you should take a good look of that staff and try to remember her face. If it is found out later that the staff lies to you and the film has already started, you can specify easily who the culprit is.


Vespertine said...

i usually think that SF staff is better than paragon but after your experience i must change perception. Feel so sad for you because i know how the complete cinema experience is important for people like us and what she did is unfair.

Vespertine said...

by the way, I just finished Stephen Poliakoff's Gideon's Daughter. It is an ok TV drama with exellent performances by the always incredible Bill Nighy as a PR guru and depressed father, Emily Blunt as a hateful daughter and Miranda Richardson as a positive - free spirited mother who losts her son.

What captured me most is the main song called PAPA, which was sung by Emily Blunt. It is a very haunted song inspired by Georges Simenon's daughter Marie-Jo who committed suicide at the age of 25 after spending large amounts of her life in mental health institutions. The film used this song to reflect the obsessive love.

Wikipedia said that Simenon's daughter held an unnatural bond with her father, who tried to curb this obsession by giving her a ring and "marrying her." It was said that the only times she removed this ring was to have it resized. Marie-Jo was buried with this ring after her death in 1978.

I told this to you because i know u will love this kind of story like me! : )

Vespertine said...


I think the song is a suicide note from daughter to father.

I see you from my window
Walking with her there
I don't need to know which number
I won't stop you touch her hair
I don't need to see you waving
When you slip away at night
I don't have to know what happened
As you crawl back when it's light

I don't need you to look at me
And tell me how many hundreds there have been
I don't want to have to listen
As they fall a constant stream
I don't need to catch you with them
Your voice so full of joy
As you murmur your little nothings
My own Papa so very coy

Mon cherie Papa
Mon cherie Papa

I don't need you to say you love me
I don't need you to say goodnight
I don't need you to caress me
I don't need to be held tight
I only want you to be ready
To know my voice will never ring
To know there'll never be another letter
You've got to hear this one small thing

I need you to remember
That I never was your shame
I always was your daughter
I never did complain
I always was your daughter
I never did complain

FILMSICK said...

oh! it's very awful .

Peter Nellhaus said...

Write to the upper management of the SF chain.


The top guys are actually more responsive in my experience.

celinejulie said...

Peter, thank you very much for your suggestions.

At first I was not sure if I should write about what happened and send it to the comment section in SF's website or not.

But I decide that I may not do it for now. It's just because I already complained to a manager (or a person who looks like a manager) after the incident, so I hope the problem might have been fixed. I'm not sure if I should pursue the case further at this point. Maybe I'm too optimistic. Anyway, if things like this happen again, I may have to send a comment to the SF's website.

celinejulie said...

Vespertine and Filmsick, thank you very much for your comment.

There are many bad things happening during the festival, but the SPLINTERS incident is the most frustrating for me, partly because I am "the only victim" of this incident. As for other bad things, such as the showing of CITIZEN HAVEL which was interrupted for about an hour, I am just "one of the many victims" of the incidents, so I did not feel angry at these incidents as much as the SPLINTERS incident.

The information about Simenon's daughter is very interesting. I didn't know before that Simenon's life is like this. I just watched THE WATCHMAKER OF SAINT-PAUL (1973, Bertrand Tavernier, A+), which is adapted from Simenon's novel, and like it very much. I really agree with what Sonthaya wrote in BOOKVIRUS 1 that Simenon is great in portraying lonely, quiet, simple lives of characters who don't realize that there are some problems in their lives which keep growing bigger and bigger until they explode.

celinejulie said...

This is my reply to Bogdan in my wordpress blog:

I don't understand it either. It's a mystery for me.

I also want to note that a somewhat similar incident happened on Saturday, June 20, 2009, during the French Film Festival in Bangkok at SF World Cinema. And it happened at the same ticket collector's booth, though it happened with different staff, if I remember it correctly.

I bought an early ticket for LARGO WINCH, which would be shown on that day. The ticket said that the film would be shown at CINEMA 14, so I went to the ticket collector's booth in front of that theater at the time the film was supposed to be shown, but a staff told me that CINEMA 14 wasn't open yet.

I waited near the booth for a few minutes. Fortunately, I ran into a friend of mine who told me that the venue for LARGO WINCH was changed to CINEMA 15. So I hurriedly went to CINEMA 15 and got inside the theater just in time the film was about to begin.

If on that day I hadn't accidentally run into my friend, what would have happened? I would have waited there in front of CINEMA 14 for a long time, before I started to realize there was something wrong. It is not the duty of a customer to find out by himself that the place has been changed. It is not the duty of my friend to tell me about this. It was the duty of the SF staff there to tell me that the venue for LARGO WINCH was changed, but they didn't perform this duty.

After seeing LARGO WINCH, I went to that ticket collector's booth to complain about this. I was not very angry at that time, partly because I was fortunate to run into my friend, partly because the venue change was caused by the festival organizer, not the SF staff. I didn't expect at that time that I would face the same kind of problems again. And this time I was not as lucky as the first time.

celinejulie said...

In the end, I decided to send my comment to the SF's website, because I think this might help ensuring that the problems won't be repeated again. :-)