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Film / The Love of Siam

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The two main characters
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The Love of Siam (Thai: รักแห่งสยาม, rtgs: Rak Haeng Sayam, pronounced [rák hɛ̀ŋ sà.jǎːm]) is a 2007 Thai gay-themed romantic-drama film written and directed by Chookiat Sakveerakul. In this multi-layered family drama, a groundbreaking element is a gay romance between two teenage boys.

The film was released in Thailand on November 22, 2007. The fact that the gay storyline was not apparent from the film's promotional material initially caused controversy, but the film was received with critical acclaim and proved financially successful. It dominated Thailand's 2007 film awards season, winning the Best Picture category in all major events.

The story depicts two boyhood friends (Tong and Mew) who were separated due to the disappearance of the sister (Tang) of one of them. They then later meet again as teenagers, when one of them has become a pop singer, and they discover feelings that they did not know they had before. Besides the romance and coming out story line, the movie also delve into the breaking down and struggle within the family over a loss of a loved one.

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This movie provides examples of:

  • Act of True Love:
    • Ying decided to help Tong get together with Mew even though she loves Mew. She is willing to give up Mew, the person who she had loved since she was a child, because she knows Mew is in love with Tong. She wants him to be happy over herself.
    • A bit for Tong. He did ignore his own mother's command and tried to continue seeing Mew anyway.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: Averted. Despite the story depicting teenager and romance, there are no such scenes in the movie.
  • All Gays Are Promiscuous: Averted. The two gay characters in the movie never even had sex or had sex with each other.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Averted. Ying loves Mew who is anything but a bad boy. Played around a bit with Donut and Tong. Tong smokes and drinks alcohol despite being underage. Therefore, he sort of fit the bad boy archetype. However, he is genuinely a sweet and kind person which kind of warrants a good boy status as oppose to bad boy.
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  • All-Loving Hero: Ying, the Chinese girl who has a crush on Mew. Throughout the movie, she was kind and helpful to both Tong and Mew. She was the only person out of Tong's friends to comfort Tong when he is confused about his sexuality. It should be noted that she's not that close to Tong and only just met him not long ago. She also helped Mew with his love song and fixed him up with Tong despite knowing that in doing so mean she would have no chance with Mew in the future.
  • All Love Is Unrequited:
    • Played straight for Ying. She is in love with Mew, but Mew tells her he will always only see her as a good friend.
    • Played straight for Donut and her love for Tong. Granted she actually did date him but Tong wasn't that into it.
    • Played around a bit with Tong and Mew. The two boys loved each other, but they ultimately couldn't get together due to reasons.
  • Anchored Ship: Tong and Mew never really got into the relationship/dating phase despite both characters love each other.
  • Attractiveness Isolation: Played straight with Ying. Ying is an attractive girl. However, no one in the movie ever complements or even asked her out. Ying's friends who are arguably less attractive than her even pokes fun of her for being single.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: When Tong's mother forbids Tong from seeing Mew, he simply brushed her off and went to search for Mew.
    • Unfortunately, the two boys don't get together in the end. However, the movie do end with a bittersweet ending with Tong confessing his love for him. Furthermore, there's many foreshadowing that they will get together in the future.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: The reason why Mew fell in love with Tong was mostly because Tong was the first person, other than his family, to protect and be kind to him when he was young.
  • Berserk Button: Played straight during the first half of the film where Ying will get upset and angry when people call Mew gay. It should be noted that Ying is in love with Mew.
  • Better as Friends:
    • Ying and Mew.
    • Tong and Mew. They remained friends in the end. However, the movie kind of hint that they would eventually get together as soon as Tong fixes his family issues.
  • Bi the Way: Tong has a girlfriend, Donut, before he met Mew. Therefore, he could've been bi. However, it should be noted that he did not really love or cared about her as shown during the first section of the movie. In addition, the movie implies he never slept with a girl before as shown during the scene when Tong was breaking down and confused about his sexuality, he got scared from touching Ying's breast. Therefore, this could be more just a case of him being confused about his own sexuality.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Tong and Mew don't end up together in the end. Sunee never found out whether June is really Tang. We also don't know whether Korn will die or not. However, what keeps it from being a tragic ending is that Tong and Mew confessed their love and it is that love that helped each other grow in the end. In addition, even though we don't know the eventual fate of Korn and Tang, it was implied that things are getting better.
  • Bodyguard Crush: Played around a bit. Although Tong isn't technically Mew's bodyguard, Tong made it his mission to protect and cheer Mew up when they were a child.
  • Break His Heartto Save Him: This is the implied reason as to why Tong couldn't be Mew in the end.
  • Break Up to Make Up: Cruelly averted in the end. Granted Tong and Mew never actually went through the dating phase. The two quickly break it off after their first kiss only to reunite at the end. One will assume Tong will confess his love and the two would get together, right? Wrong! Tong confessed his love and told him that he can't be his boyfriend.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: It seems like every characters in the movie have the tendency to just not answer a question.
  • Cast Full of Gay: Averted. Only the two main characters and two background characters are gay.
  • Chastity Couple:
    • Tong and Mew.
    • Tong and Donut. Granted Tong wasn't actually in love with Donut.
  • Cheerful Child: Played straight then averted. Tong started off as a cheerful child. However, after the disappearance of his sister (Tang) and the breaking down of his family, he understandingly became less cheerful.
  • The Chew Toy: Mew being sensitive and quiet often find himself getting bullied/teased by other the school boys and even by one of his friend during CPR.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: It's basically the whole premise of the movie.
  • Closed Door Rapport: When Tong found out that his mother forbids Mew from seeing him, he ran to Mew's house only for Mew to lock him out. Tong then started yelling for him to come out and talk. However, Mew just ignored him. This caused quite a scene where eventually the neighbors told Tong to stop yelling.
  • Clueless Chick Magnet: Mew. He had no idea that Ying was in love with her despite it being very obvious. There was even one scene that Ying offered Mew to date her just so he can experience the meaning of love. Eventually he found out.
  • Comforting Comforter: When Mew fell asleep on Tong's arm, instead of waking him up, Tong quietly slip out and wrote him a number saying he didn't want to wake him up from his nap.
  • Coming-Out Story: This is a love story about two teenage boys. It's bound to happen.
  • Concert Climax
  • Coupled Couples: Averted. Except for Donut in the Director's Cut, none of the other protagonists ended up in a relationship.
  • Declaration of Protection: Tong doesn't outright say it to Mew, but it was implied throughout the prelude. It was confirmed at the end of the prelude with Tong telling Mew that he will need to protect himself from now on since he won't be there anymore.
  • Derailing Love Interests: Donut. Although, we never really see how she was like before dating Tong, we were constantly told by Tong's friends that Donut is/was a nice girl. However, all her screen time in the movie had her acting bitchy and downright controlling. She was even shown dating another guy while she was still dating Tong. However, all this could be attributed by the fact that Tong is constantly neglecting her.
  • Destroy the Evidence: Played straight during the later half of the film. When June/Tang told Korn (Tong and Tang's dad) to stop drinking, he secretly drinks behind her and his family's back. He hides the alcohol in the couch.
  • Devoted to You: Ying. The poor girl had pictures of Mew stuck around her wall. She even tried to use voodoo magic to get Mew to fall in love with her. Even when she found out that Mew was gay (ending any chance of a relationship to happen), she still tried her best to make sure Mew is happy (e.g. Helping him with his love song for Tong). Thankfully, she tearfully let go in the end allowing her to finally find a good guy that can commit to her.
  • Did Not Get The Guy:
    • Ying never got Mew.
    • Mew never got Tong and vice versa.
    • Played around bit with Donut. Although she got Tong (as they were dating in the beginning), his heart was never there for her.
  • Disposable Girlfriend: Donut. She was Tong's girlfriend throughout the entire movie. Unlike many characters of this trope, she doesn't really act as an obstacle for Tong or Mew. This is because she doesn't get much screen time and she doesn't even know about Tong and Mew.
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Both Tong and Mew clearly loves each other. However, at the end, Tong told Mew he cannot be his boyfriend, but nevertheless still love him.
  • Eating the Eye Candy
  • Eternal Love: Tong and Mew. Tong told Mew he loves him. The film's message sort of implied that they will get together eventually as long as they keep loving each other.
  • Everyone Can See It: Literally everyone in the film including Donut who have never actually even met Mew (except for Ying and Sunee) comments that Tong and Mew is in love with each other.
  • Fate Drives Us Together: The two boys were next door neighbors. They were then both separated only to be reunited years later in a store. It should be noted that one of the boy is a fan of a band who the other boy happened to be in.
  • The First Cut Is the Deepest: Mew's love for his grandma is so big that when his grandma died, it temporarily stopped him from loving people or getting getting close to people.
  • First Love: Tong and Mew. Even though technically Tong dated Donut first, he never really loved her so it's still Tong and Mew.
  • First Boy Wins: Played straight then averted. Tong met Mew first, and they fell deeply in love with each other. However, ultimately, they didn't even up with each other.
  • Flowers of Romance: Ying and her thorn-less roses. Unfortunately, it doesn't work out for her.
  • Fool for Love: Ying and her love for Mew caused her to do many strange things, such as trying to use voodoo magic.
  • Forgotten First Meeting: Averted. Tong and Mew recognized each other straight away after the many years of separation.
  • Gratuitous English: Not English but Chinese instead. Ying and her family are Chinese, however, their Chinese weren't exactly accurate. Granted it could be because their Chinese skill were just weakened over the years living in Thailand.
  • Happily Married: Sunee and Korn before the disappearance of Tang. The ending seems to imply that they will get better.
  • Headbutt of Love: They bumped head several times during the kissing scene. [1]
  • Her Heart Will Go On: Donut (Tong's girlfriend) sure had no problem finding a new boyfriend quickly after getting dumped by Tong in Christmas.
  • Hollywood Kiss: Tong and Mew's kiss. See it here [2]
  • If It's You, It's Okay: Tong had a girlfriend before meeting Mew. However, this could be because he is not sure about his sexuality yet.
  • Incompatible Orientation: Ying is in love with Mew, who is gay. Donut likes Tong who is also gay.
  • Interrupted Declaration of Love: Ying was about to confess her love to Mew with her thorn-less rose before she found out that Mew was gay.
  • It Doesn't Mean Anything: Mew told Sunee that he and Tong were just friends after she caught him kissing her son.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Ying helping Mew (the boy she loves since she was little) to write a love song even though she knows that it is for Tong. She also helped Tong to get Mew in the end.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Despite breaking and ruining his son's first true love and possibly any future love, Sunee does have a point that life would be difficult for Tong if he continues to date Mew. It should be noted that in Asian society (Thailand is better), gay people are still not as socially accepted.
  • Just Friends: Mew told Ying that he will always see her as a good friend.
    • This is also the excuse Mew gave to Sunee despite her catching both him and Tong kissing.
  • Last Confession Wins: Averted. Tong and Mew never got together
  • Let'sJustBeFriends: Tong and Mew in the end.
  • Literally Loving Thy Neighbor: Tong and Mew were neighbors before they fell in love with each other.
    • One sided from Ying, but Ying and Mew are also neighbors.
  • Love at First Sight: If the time-skip sequence is anything to go by, that's how Ying fell in love with Mew. Too bad for her, it's not reciprocated.
  • Love Confession: Tong confessing his love for Mew. If only it ended there...
  • Love Dodecahedron: Okay... Tong loves Mew. Mew loves Tong. Tong is dating Donut. Donut is in love with Tong. Ying is in love with Mew. Mew doesn't love Ying. Ying thinks Tong is cute. Tong tried to come onto Ying.
  • Love Hurts: Everyone goes through this in the film.
  • Love Makes You Crazy: Ying took on voodoo magic to try to make Mew to fall in love with her.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: In universe, Ying's friends and families comment that Ying isn't being smart for loving Mew.
  • Love Theme: Considering that one of the main character is a song writer in universe, this is bound to happen.
  • Love-Obstructing Parents: Had Tong's mother (Sunee) didn't prevent Mew from seeing Tong, they probably would've gotten together in the end.
  • Manly Tears:
    • Tong breaking down and crying in Mew's arms when his sister was missing.
    • Tong breaking down and seeking comfort from Ying when he was confused about his sexuality.
    • Mew breaking down in the end of the film, and thanking Tong for everything he has done for him.
  • Not What It Looks Like: Sunee witnessed Tong kissing Mew. When Sunee confronts Mew about it, he denies it saying they're Just Friends despite the kiss proving otherwise.
  • Oblivious to Love: Mew is completely oblivious that Ying is in love with him, despite it being very obvious. However, he isn't oblivious to Tong's feeling for him at all.
  • Official Couple: Tong and Mew. [spoiler: Unfortunately, they don't get together in the end]].
    • It should be noted that the first trailer of the movie tries to depict the official couple as Tong/Donut and Mew/Ying.
  • Only Sane Man: June/Tang is the most normal and level headed person throughout the entire film.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Sunee... Granted the poor woman have to go through a lot, such as coping with the disappearance of her daughter, her husband slowly killing himself, worrying about his son's future, etc.
  • Please Don't Leave Me: Tong wanting to win Mew back after he found out that the reason Mew avoided him is because his mother spoken to Mew beforehand. Unfortunately, they still didn't get together in the end.
  • Promoted to Love Interest: [3] This first trailer seems to implied that Ying and Donut will being playing the love interest role for the male leads. Oh how the trailer lies...
  • Relationship Sabotage: Sunee practically sabotaged her son's relationship.
  • Queer Romance: The story about two boys who fall in love.
  • The Matchmaker: Ying during the second part of the film.
  • The Power of Love: Despite the two characters never got together in the end, their love helped improve each other. Tong finally stopped stringing Donut along and is comfortable about his own sexuality. Mew finally learn to protect himself and believe in love again.
  • Maybe Ever After: The film ended with Tong and Mew remaining as friends but with hints that point to them that they will maybe eventually get together.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: [4] This trailer tricked a lot of Thai audiences into thinking that the film was about hetero sexual love.
  • My Son Is Off-Limits!: Sunee basically gave that to Mew.
  • Puppy Love: The love is between two teenagers.
  • Race for Your Love: Tong rushes to Mew after the concert before Mew leaves to confess his love for him.
  • Reality Ensues: Unfortunately, the film ended very realistically where the two main characters don't get together. This is really common in Asian society where even though two people clearly loves each other, they don't get together due to fear of upsetting family or bringing shame to the family.
    • Even though Sunee told Tong that he can choose whatever he wants and that she'll support him, she is still a bit upset that her son is gay. The same can be said the same to Tong's decision to not get together with Mew even though his mother told him he'll support him. At the end of the day, Tong will choose his family life over his own life which is extremely common in Asian society.
  • Satellite Love Interest: Donut. Granted she is not really a love interest, but all we know about her is that she is Tong's girlfriend who he doesn't really like.
    • Some might see Ying as this despite her getting several background information (e.g. She is Chinese) and her role of helping Tong realizing his sexuality.
  • Secret Relationship: Tong and Mew tried to keep their relationship a secret. Ironically, their relationship is extremely transparent to those around them.
  • So Happy Together: Tong and Mew were shown to be very happy together. They were literally perfect for each other before things happened...
  • Stalker with a Crush: Ying constantly stalks Mew through her window. She also have a crush on him.
  • Stalking Is Funny If It Is Female After Male: Ying's stalking tendency is played for laugh. Ying is a girl by the way.
  • Stood Up: Tong was stood up in their first date after their kiss.
  • Theme Naming: Tong and Tang are siblings. Their name starts with "T" and ends with "ng".
  • There Is Only One Bed: Throughout the first half of the film, Tong constantly sleep with Mew in his bed.
  • Unlucky Childhood Friend: As shown during the time-skip sequence, Ying has been in love with Mew the moment she moved in next door. Unfortunately, it doesn't work out for her.
  • Whole Episode Flashback: The prelude takes place in the past to establish the two boys' friendship.
  • Will They or Won't They?
  • Write Who You Know: That's how Mew wrote his love song in universe.


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