Q&A with director Kongkiat Komesiri

Kongkiat Komesiri’s masterful excursion into the undead realm is a striking standout, transcending well-trod genre territory with poignant food for thought and a gut-wrenching meditation on the dehumanizing effects of war. The maestro behind the Khun Pan trilogy (NYAFF 2018) is no stranger to the macabre, and he’s wielding his genre-bending scalpel on a dark chapter of recent Asian history. During Thailand’s traumatic WWII involvement, a Japan-engineered chemical weapon creates a voracious superhuman horde of Thai soldiers leaving a blood-soaked path of ultra-violence and destruction. Yet the greatest victims are the abject undead themselves, who, cursed with both an irrepressible hunger for human flesh and a moral conscience, face daunting physical and emotional pain as they verbally and viscerally clamor for peace. Komesiri’s tragic tale, anchored by a patriotic officer and his conscientious-objector brother (Chanon “Nonkul” Santinatornkul, Bad Genius, NYAFF 2017), is a soul-stirring elegy for lost humanity in a world where even the damned deserve empathy and a shot at redemption.