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Year: 1986

Thai title: ราชินีดอกหญ้า
English title:

Rating: 4/5
Director: Surasee Phatham

Main actor: Prompong Nopparith,Doo Dook Kradon
Main actress: Jarunee Sooksawad

A Molam performers group is going to quit playing (ลาเวที). They are going to play Manora performance for the last time. Benchawee is the main young lady singer. A photographer called Somwit wishes to join them. He wants to convince them not to stop as Molam is part of Isan culture but it seems too late. Finally they accept to resume one time as a donor pleads them. Molam is not so popular anymore. Mainly old people are watching. Molam performers have difficulties to compete face to modern Thai country (ลูกทุ่ง) music and need to renew their style. Molam is an art (ศิลปะ). Somwit understands the need to write down songs in order to have records as it is mainly passed orally from one generation to another. There are many kinds of Molam song style such as Molam Ploen (หมอลำเพลิน) , Molam sing (หมอลำซิ่ง) and so on... Somwit wishes to bring the Molam band to radio broadcasting. Somwit decides to mix Molam song with modern Thai song (หมอลำยังไม่ตาย). An example is “Siang Isaan” as a modern Molam music group. Sawit wants to bring Benchawee to Bangkok to increase her popularity. They meet an unscrupulous producer who only wants to abuse Rawee. They continue to tour around Thailand and start to become famous. Somwit has to go back for personal affairs in Bangkok but fails to come back. Benchawee misses him and has then difficulties to sing properly. Somwit finally comes back mixing Molam songs with a modern dancing music. Benchawee becomes the Molam queen. This movie highlights that traditions can survive and stay popular by adapting to the modern tastes. The producer realizes his mistake. Yearly best singer competition is going to happen. Who will be the next queen of singers? Duang Chan Duang Chai, Thai country music singer, has fans all over Thailand but Benchawee has only Isan fans but Isan workers are everywhere so spreading their culture. A vote happens and Benchawee is aware that she won. Somwit brings Benchawee to meet his parents. His father refuses this wedding as he is coming from high society. For him an Isan girl is same as a Lao girl so denigrating both. The game is cheated and Duang chan Duang Chai Chan is announced as winner. Molam couldn't be accepted by Bangkok elite (คนเศรษฐีโกหก) So Benchawee couldn't win. The elite has chosen but Thai people have chosen also. Benchawee’s concert is a huge success while Duang Chan Duang Chai concert is a complete failure as spectators flock to see Benchawee singing. She becomes the queen of grassroots (ราชินีดอกหญ้า) instead of the queen of flowers (ราชินีดอกฟ้า). The perjury is disclosed as hidden votes are found. It is fun to see Jarunee Sooksawad singing Molam songs (หมอลำสาวบ้านนอก). Lao and Thai languages are used in this movie shot in year 1986. The movie lasts 2h03mn. It got three rewards (รางวัลสุพรรณหงส์) during Thai film industry ceremony.

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