Tag Archives: Khmer

Rithy Panh – S21, la machine de mort Khmère rouge aka S21, the Khmer Rouge Killing Machine [+Extra] (2003)

“I survived because they liked my paintings,” says Vann Nath in this unsettling documentary, an affecting and effective film. This placid artist was imprisoned along with 17,000 other Cambodians in a Phnom Penh high school that had been converted into a Khmer Rouge interrogation and torture center. The school was used for this purpose for two years during the Khmer Rouge reign of terror (1975 to 1979), when as many as a million people died. In the film, he returns there to confront the men who worked as guards, really boys doing the Devil’s work: at the time, they ranged from 13 to their early 20’s. At one point the director shows the former guards recreating their grisly everyday tasks as a kind of pantomime. Watching them re-enact their chores in the large, stained and now empty rooms, which look like those in almost any American high school – while piles of the dead prisoners’ abandoned clothes sit heaped nearby – is simply one of the most disorienting moments you’re likely to encounter in a movie. – Elvis Mitchell Read More »

Davy Chou – Diamond Island (2016)

Bora, an 18-year-old, leaves his village to work on the construction sites of Diamond Island, a project for an ultra-modern paradise for the rich and a symbol of tomorrow’s Cambodia. He befriends his fellow workers and finds his elder brother, the charismatic Solei, who went missing five years earlier. Solei introduces him into an exciting world, that of an urban and wealthy youth, its girls, nights and illusions. Read More »

Rithy Panh – Les tombeaux sans noms AKA Graves Without a Name (2018)

In Rithy Panh’s latest exploration of the lasting effects of the Cambodian genocide, a 13-year-old boy who loses most of his family begins a search for their graves.Cambodian-born, France-based filmmaker Rithy Panh has dedicated much of his career to investigating the campaign of genocide undertaken by the Khmer Rouge during the Cambodian Civil War and memorializing its victims.

Official submission of Cambodia for the ‘Best Foreign Language Film’ category of the 91st Academy Awards in 2019. Read More »