In a makeshift country hospital, several soldiers lie comatose, suffering from a mysterious sleeping sickness. Volunteer Jen (Pongpas) takes particular interest in Itt (Lomnoi), who has no family to visit him. Occasionally Itt awakens and they spend time together before he falls back asleep. Through psychic medium Keng (Rueangram), Jen communicates with Itt, and together they explore the lost worlds of the past and the kingly palaces buried beneath the earth.
Hovering between reverie and reality, the present and the past, Weerasethakul’s poetic narrative is brimming with symbolic and allegorical meaning. The glowing bedside lamps of the patients (and the director’s hypnotic pacing) lull us into a world where spirits commune with the living through the ghost-like narcoleptics, co-existing among us. Thematically in tune with Weerasethakul’s fascinating though challenging oeuvre, this image-rich drama meditates on the beauty, mystery and political history of his country.