06-11-2022, 12:00 h.
For her 30th birthday, Ah Bee’s mother gives her a membership to the Tiong Bahru Social Club, a planned community of cakes and positivity dedicated to the pursuit of happiness. However, is this a realistic goal that a ready-made, algorithm-driven microcosm of society can safely achieve? While Ah Bee initially conforms to the club’s homogenized rules of conduct, genuine thoughts and emotions begin to seep through, questioning the ideal of the group. Writer-director Tan Bee Thiam’s insightful and whimsical world-building poses deep existential questions against a gleefully imaginative backdrop, where the creeping shadow of artificiality may, indeed, point to enlightenment.
Bee Thiam Tan is a director from Singapore who has worked as a producer, writer and editor. He was a student of Berlinale Talents, Rotterdam Lab and European Audiovisual Entrepreneurs (EAVE). As a director, his works include Kopi Julia, one of 13 short films curated by Apichatpong Weerasethakul for the Sharjah Biennale. His co-director feature film Fundamentally Happy, a film adaptation of the award-winning 2006 play by Haresh Sharma and Alvin Tan, was shot by Christopher Doyle and premiered at Tallinn Black Nights FF 2015. His first feature film is Tiong Bahru Social Club (Udine Far East FF Genre Project Market).