Dang Bireley’s and Young Gangsters

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Dang Bireley’s and Young Gangsters

2499 อันธพาลครองเมือง (2499 Anthaphan krong muang)

Thailand, 1997, 103’, Thai
Directed by: Nonzee Nimibutr
Screenplay: Wisit Sasanatieng
Photography (color): Winai Patomboon 
Editing: Sunit Ussavinikul
Music: Orange Music
Production Design: Ek Iamchuenl
Producer: Visute Poolvoralaks
Executive Producer: Visute Poolvoraralks
Cast: Jessadaporn Pholdee, Nopachai Muttaweevong, Attaporn Teemakorn, Supakorn Kitsuwan, Chartchai Ngamsan, Apichart Choosakul, Champagne X

Date of First Release in Territory: April 11th, 1997


Based on real events during the 1950s, Dang Bireley’s and Young Gangsters portrays the lives of famous gangsters in Bangkok who had conflicts of interests among themselves. While they were involved with fighting and violence – many of which became the talk of the town during those days – these groups of youngsters also love rock and roll, Elvis Presley and James Dean. These cinematic contrasts finally drew audiences from all generations to be back to the theatres at that time, after a decade of teenage flicks occupation in the mid-1980s and 1990s.
At that time, the renowned gangsters in the town would use a pseudonym with their nickname and neighbourhood. For Dang Bireley’s, his nickname and the soft drink called Bireley’s were connected because the Bireley’s manufacture was located there. Dang was a fanatic of his idol James Dean, imitating his look, in addition to his love in dance and rock and roll. As a result, both James Dean and Elvis Presley were paid homage to all the time in the movie. What we can see from the movie is not only the lives of young people in Bangkok at the high times of American pop culture expanding to the Far Eastern area. We can see how the young audience consumed and appreciated youth culture like those in the West. Simultaneously, it also shows how modernity was depicted in parallel to the times of lawless society in Bangkok. Many of the fighting scenes became buzz at that time and were historically recorded as events of the year.
Like many emerging cinematic phenomenona, Dang Bireley’s and Young Gangsters is full of freshness and novelty. Both director Nonzee and scriptwriter Wisit Sasanatieng became the established veterans they are today. Wisit himself directed his own debut Tears of the Tiger (2000), which became the first Thai film that was officially invited to Cannes International Film Festival. Actor Jessadaporn Pholdee who portrays Dang Bireley’s is today the superstar in Thailand. 


Nonzee Nimibutr


Nonzee Nimibutr was recognized as one of the New Thai Cinema pioneers that has brought Thailand into the global map, including Pen-ek Ratanaruang, Wisit Sasanatieng and Apichatpong Weerasethakul. He finished in visual communication design from Faculty of Decorative Arts at Silpakorn University in 1987, and then started his career as a director of television commercials and music video. After the huge success of his first two debuts Dang Bireley’s and Young Gangsters and Nang Nak, Nonzee has moved to screen industry and then holds both directing and producing jobs for several other fellows.


1997 – Dang Bireley’s and Young Gangsters
1999 – Nang Nak
2001 – Jan Dara
2002 – Three
2003 – OK Baythong
2008 – Queens of Langkasuka
2012 – Distortion
2015 – Timeline

Anchalee Chaiworaporn
Film director: Nonzee NIMIBUTR
Year: 1997
Running time: 103'
Country: Thailand
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28-04-2023 18:50 28-04-2023 20:33Europe/Rome Dang Bireley’s and Young Gangsters Far East Film Festival Visionario, Via Asquini 33CEC Udine cec@cecudine.org
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