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Butterfly Man review

Dumped by his girlfriend at the start of their travels in Thailand, twentysomething back-packer Adam (Stuart Laing) decides to take advantage of the local opportunities on offer. He then falls in love with Em (Napakpapha Nakprasitte) - only to find himself dropped again when she discovers his philandering ways. It seems that it's time for Adam to grow up, not least because he's just stumbled upon a human trafficking operation that has Em next in line for illegal export...

A good-looking movie shot on a minuscule budget, Kaprice Kea's feature debut attempts to pass through The Beach-style territory, only with a sharper focus on the tourist/locals relationship. It's a smart idea and it could have worked, but the movie's rendered obsolete by a perplexing shift from travelogue to (silly) thriller and Laing's startling lack of charisma. Not so much phoning in his performance as airmailing it over, his ineptitude is harshly exposed by Kea's static direction.

Full marks for effort, but the execution leaves a lot to be desired.

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