By Andrew Hamlin Northwest Asian Weekly Thailand’s Apichatpong Weerasethakul, who turns 40 in July, began making feature films 11 years ago in 2000. Working outside the Thai studio system, he quickly established himself as an artistic maverick, with films rich in light and spirit.
We Don’t Care About Music Anyway” is a documentary studying experimental musicians in and around Tokyo. Its structure is experimental in itself.
The Khmer Rouge, Cambodia’s ruling party from 1975 to 1979, killed more than 1.3 million Cambodian citizens, according to an analysis by Yale University.
Each year, South Korea’s Jeonju Film Festival supports three filmmakers to shoot a half-hour film using digital cameras. Each filmmaker receives a budget of 50 million Korean won (about $44,000). The results from last year’s show featured three up-and-coming Asian directors using their electronic tools in distinctive manners.
Chung-ryoul Lee’s documentary “Old Partner” begins with pain. An old man climbs a long set of steps to a temple. He carries a cane. He pauses after each step. He inhales sharply after each step, wondering if he will ever get to the top. The notion of enduring pain and suffering continues throughout the film.
Burma is sometimes a forgotten country. Officially called Myanmar by the country’s military junta, in late 2007, more than 100,000 people took to the streets of Rangoon in protest of the ruling regime. Called the “Saffron Revolution” because of the color of the robes donned by the monks who initiated the stand, the protest was quickly suppressed with brute force.
Directed by Zhang-ke Jia, “24 City” is a Chinese film that blends documentary and fiction. It opens with a grim tone: Factory workers heat and hammer metal, and shots reveal people lingering alone and in smaller groups. The film follows individuals as they recount the story of how a factory turned into an apartment complex, a reflection of how China modernized.