By presenting films of artistry and intellect, the festival hopes to reinforce accurate portrayals of people with developmental disabilities and expose the general public to important issues facing this population. The goal is an enjoyable and enlightening experience that will help breakdown stereotypes, promoting a greater acceptance of differences and awareness of similarities.
When a friend in LA message me on Facebook how she loved this Thai film, Eternity (Tee Rak) he saw in the film festival over there, I was anticipating to see it but not sure if I ever get a chance. Either it had already been screened before I was back in the country or would never seen the light in Thai cinemas. Until Wise Kwai blogged about it as a limited screening, I just had to put it my weekend schedule.
There is something about this film that moves you without following the classic story telling rules. The tagline is just about the love of a young couple which happens to be the parents of Siraroj Kongsakul, the director. He tells the story through snipplets of memories of his late father, mainly on the young girl’s first visit to his hometown. And that is it, no big arguement between them or no culture crash of the city girl and the country folks.
Everything is understated. The transitions of the first sequence to the main story and the last act are very subtle. Some scenes are just the two people talking without cutting and they even turn their back on the camera. We can only see medium shots of them each twice. But when these strings of momeries are tied up together, it becomes a haunting experience.
A great love story always comes with pain. In this film, it subsides so deeply that you can only feel it. We see the adorable ones build their relationship along the journey but in the end, nothing lasts and one has to live with it, like anyone of us will…
Teth Sambath is a Senoir Journalist at Phnom Pehn Post. For ten years, he has travelled out in the rural areas of Cambodia to find out what really happened in the Killing Fields, where Khmer Rouge executed its accused political opponents during the regime in 1975-1979. He slowly gains trusts of the perpetrators from the low end of the chains of command who did the killing to the Brother Number Two, Nuon Chea and have them give their testimonies in front of the camera.
And it becomes a stunning rare documentary, Enemies of the People, which is beyond talking about a conflict but more about getting over it.
Teth has got the best asset to look into this topic—he is local. He uses it to make rapports with his subjects to get them speak their stories since no one would open their mouths to any foreign journo, let alone come out in the open and admit the things they have done. Even so, it takes time and patience to track and crack them. However, he never exploits them and very much empathises with them.
It is heartbroken to see the sorrow in Non Chea’s eyes when Teth discloses later on that he, himself, was a victim of Khmer Rouge as his father, mother and brother were killed at the time. Here, there is an interesting balance between a personal journey and an investigative journalism. This makes it such a fine piece of story telling. It is personal but not judgemental.
The Killing Fields story is one of the darkest moments in modern history. In such a human bloodshed story, for this one in particular, we hardly see what comes out from side who commits the violence. Once we witness that in this film, there is nothing but guilt and remorse. We all have that in a certain degree. We are all human, after all.
A colleague send an email to everyone in the office to watch this Norwegian documentary about and I find that I have to share it to everyone regardless I have not posted anything for months (sorry about that). Here is the description you will find on the page.
Pyramids of Waste (2010) also known as “The lightbulb conspiracy” is a documentary about how our economic system based on consumerism and planned obsolescence is breaking our planet down.
Solutions to this can be found at: The Venus ProjectThe Zeitgeist Movement
It is one of the most thought-provoking films I have watched since the Matrix. It is like you discover an idea in the film which makes sense to you and makes you want to make the different. I believe this is just the start. Start at us, at our thinking. And that how we evolve.