High School. Sort of.
Dark skinned, with glasses and braces = the complete cliche package of an ugly girl falls in love with unbelievably handsome and charming upperclassman. Of course he has to be perfect in every way possible, all sensitive and artistic (but athletic and hot at the same time) while she is the clumsy nerd in the shadows.
The movie opens up with Nam's quirky group of friends and a teacher who is too straightforward for her own good. A few juvenile scenes of picking out crushes, passing notes during class and stolen glimpses and suddenly, the story becomes all too familiar.
All those enchantment-believing, book-reading and daydreaming moments could might as well be anybody else's story and it was that gravitation to something so recognizable to all, I think, that made this movie so popular and endearing to people who have a heart and once used it for something no matter how one-sided and futile the experience was.
But of course the lead character must shed off her veil of ugliness and become this pretty swan in a matter of a few months. Any story set on screen could definitely not end with the Prince Charming falling in love with the still visually despicable commoner! The transformation was so dramatic I had to Google if two different actresses played her part.
I found it bothersome how society (apparently even in Thailand) entails that for a character to be noticed and loved, she has to be physically beautiful. Yes it's nice that after a lot of name-callings and schoolyard torture, the caterpillar that we have grown accustomed to has wreathed out of her cocoon and transformed into a beautiful butterfly. But still, wouldn't it be more interesting, and inspiring even, if the Prince Charming and the ordinary girl had their happily ever after without some cliche make-over / metamorphosis in the middle to make everything easier on the eyes?
For me, it was a rocky road from the moment Nam became painfully beautiful. She suddenly lost her adorable awkward charm and it was not as interesting seeing her being fawned upon by random schoolmates. Fortunately, the story picked up near the ending with humiliating confessions, predictable heartbreak and some flipping through a black book.
Overall, it is a must-see for everyone who have gone through high school and/or puberty. I guaranty you will relieve those tiled school halls with such clarity it's disconcerting. The trailer got it right when it said that it is based on a true story of everyone. And I find myself agreeing with that claim. At least for the first 30 minutes. ;)