Friday, October 27, 2017

First They Killed My Father (2017)

Director: Angelina Jolie. Cast: Sareum Srey Moch, Phoeung Kompheak, Sveng Socheata. 136 min. Cambodia/USA. Biography/History.

Angelina Jolie is finally getting it. She tells the story of the 1975-1979 genocide of Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, based on the memoirs of survivor Loung Ung. As it goes along, the movie becomes less in-your-face preachy, and the camera angles and minimum dialogue more mature, showing the viewpoint of its heroine child, keeping a safe distance but still letting us understand her pain. From Blood and Honey's NoMo to Unbroken's SoSo to this, Jolie is learning the trade. And that God's-eye view of the child walking through a minefield while runners explode around her, won't let you go.

PS: Cambodia's entry for this year's Oscars, made by and available on Netflix.

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