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Our Global Cult Cinema series continues with this Thai cult film blending westerns and romance.

Tears of the Black Tiger
, Thailand, 2000, 1h 50m

Introduced by Martin Johnson, UNC Dept. of English & Comparative Literature


“In the countryside of Thailand, a gang of outlaws makes the region unsafe. Among them is the handsome hero Dum, who became unwillingly involved in the bandit life. Dum made a promise to his upper-crust lover Rumpoey: despite the class difference, they will get married. When the moment of reunion arrives, Dum gets involved in a fire fight and cannot possibly reach Rumpoey in time. She is desperate: her father has married her off to a policeman. The taciturn Dum, called the ‘Black Tiger’ by his co-conspirators, does everything in his power to reach her, but fate gets in the way: his gang leader suspects him of treachery and his blood brother turns into his greatest enemy. Will the two lovers ever meet up? This urgent question propels the melodrama forward, supported by exciting music, spectacular shootouts and heroic duels.” —Anonymous (IMDB)


Free tickets available at the Varsity Theatre, 123 E. Franklin St.



From Rocky Horror Picture Show to The Big Lebowski, cult classics are movies that become objects of adulation for their most dedicated fans. While some cult classics are good movies by conventional standards, others are famous precisely because the director was more interested in having a good time than winning awards. In this series, we’ll show four global cult classics (or soon to-be classics), including Çetin İnanç’s 1982 science-fiction action film Dünyayı Kurtaran Adam (“The Man Who Saved the World”), which infamously “borrowed” special effects sequences from Star Wars and Lo Wei’s 1972 film The Big Boss, which made Bruce Lee an international star. Tears of the Black Tiger pays homage to Thai action films and melodramas of the 1950s, crossing that indelible line between reverence and parody. Om Shanti Om also pays tribute to a golden era of filmmaking, only in this case it’s concerned with recreating the over-the-top dance numbers of 1970s Bollywood filmmaking.

The Spring 2022 Global Cult Cinema series, co-organized by the Ackland Art Museum and the Film Studies Program in the Department of English and Comparative Literature, is presented in connected with an installation in Ackland Upstairs, the Museum’s second floor gallery featuring short term displays of works being used in conjunction with university classes. This semester, visitors can find examples of posters from the Ackland’s collection on display for Research Methods in Film Studies: Histories of Moviegoing.

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