Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A Father's Heart, a bird flu film by Anousone Sirisackda

Sabaidee Luang Prabang
is the first film production by Czech-trained Laotian director Anousone Sirisackda and his Lao Art Media company.

Before making the feature film, as a co-production with Thai director Sakchai Deenan and the Sparta Company, Lao Art Media mainly shot karaoke videos for its stable of Laotian singers.

Well, when I think about Lao karaoke videos, I think about YouTube. And indeed some concert footage of some of the Lao Art Media artists can be found here, here and here. If you are allergic to nasally singing, melted-cheese synthesizer, splashy horn lines, keening, jangly guitar and cowbell clicks on all fours, then don't press play. If the above sounds enticing, have a listen. It's mostly morlam, though they have some more pop-leaning artists too.

But it was this hour-long bird-flu docudrama, A Father's Heart, which really caught my eye. Made with funding from Japan and the World Health Organization, in cooperation with Lao National Television and Lao National Theatre, the movie is about a young farmer and his daughter -- the same cheeky little girl who portrays Noi's sister in Sabaidee Luang Prabang -- and the heartbreak that comes with eating runny eggs, fresh-blood salad, being bitten by chickens and touching the skin of uncooked poultry in this time of health crisis.

The embedded video is a playlist, and the movie is broken up into 18 segments of 3 to 5 minutes each. And, it's subtitled. Enjoy.

Oh, if you viewing this in Thailand, and are having problems, or if you're not having problems, consider leaving a comment about it here. There are some rumblings in the farang Internet community about YouTube being down, or some videos being unavailable. Obviously, I didn't have any problems with the videos I've mentioned here.

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