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Bong Thom [The Brother]

Synopsis

Heng lives with his close knit deeply Buddhist family in rural Cambodia, who work hard struggling as farmers. At 6, he lost both his arms in a landmine explosion. Now, as a teenager  hanging with the wrong crowd, and no future at the farm, his mother sends him to his older brother, Chana, who makes romantic music videos in the bustling city of Phnom Penh. Here, with a bossy brother, amid a So-Me, “wanna-be” culture, Heng must make it.
A film about a family who are living the consequences of war which ended decades ago. 

***

WORLD PREMIERE at GÖTEBORG FILM FESTIVAL - Göteborg, Sweden - February 2023

NORWEGIAN PREMIERE at HUMAN IDFF - Oslo, Norway - March 2023

AWARDS & NOMINATIONS:

In Nordic Documentary Competition - Göteborg Film Festival

In Norwegian Documentary Competition - Human IDFF

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         Director's Statement

Being from a war-torn country and dealing with post-war themes has
been a great challenge for me. I visited Cambodia in 2011, as part of
Nowhere to Hide, a film I was making at the time. The visit opened my
eyes, but it also devastated me. On that visit I had met our protagonist
Heng and his family. The images of the young injured boy stayed with
me, an illustration of what it’s like living the consequences of a war that
ended decades ago.


What I found out about Heng exceeded all my expectations for amputees
in the developing world. Heng had escaped an almost predestined
fate. How was this possible? In 2017, after spending a year of
research and gaining trust within the community, I spent 3-4 years filming
with unique access to Heng, his older brother Chana, their parents,
and friends. What I uncovered was a fantastic insight into a postwar era
through this family’s story, where war is still present despite many years
of peace; a family drawn between the old and new Cambodia.

Format & Length

Duration | 84 min / Broadcast Hour

Format | UHD, DCP

Aspect Ratio | 16:9

Sound | 5.1 Surround, Stereo

Languages | Khmer with English & Norwegian subtitles

 

Production | Ten Thousand Images

Mette Cheng-Munthe Kaas

mette@tenthousandimages.no

 

Distribution | East Village Entertainment

Diana Holtzberg

diana@eastvillageentertainment.com

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Credits

Director

Zaradasht Ahmed

 

Producer

Mette Cheng Munthe-Kaas

 

International Co-Producers

Corinne van Egeraat - ZIN Documentaire (the Netherlands)

Marina-Evelina Cracana - Film and Tell (Sweden)

Oscar Hedin - Film and Tell (Sweden)

 

Cinematographer

Zaradasht Ahmed

 

Editor

Eva Hillström

2nd Unit Cinematographer
Petr Lom

 

Production Company

Ten Thousand Images AS

 

Financed by

Norwegian Film Institute
Filmkraft Rogaland
Netherlands Film Fund
Fritt Ord Foundation
Swedish Film Institute
Fond for Lyd og Bilde
Viken Filmsenter
Mediefondet Zefyr
SVT
Bergesenstiftelsen

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