Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Opening the trap

As long ago as early 2008 I helped American professor Tim Sorel shoot some footage for a documentary he was making on Cambodia. We interviewed the late Vann Nath and Em Theay. I remember both days as though they were yesterday. This Sunday (1 July) I will get to see the film for the first time, though what Tim originally had in mind, looking back at Cambodia thirty years on from the Khmer Rouge period, changed dramatically over time. His powerful documentary, 26 minutes in length, will be shown at Meta House this weekend, and then The Flicks on 9 July. The film's blurb explains the new direction the director took: The Trap of Saving Cambodia, is part of the international dialogue about the dilemma facing America and the world. The film follows NGO leader David Pred who is trying to put a global spotlight on troubling issues facing this country: forced evictions; corruption on a massive scale; the underground trafficking of women and children. Equally disturbing, could the World Bank, joined by global superpowers such as the United States and China, be funneling billions of dollars in aid to the government with little or no accountability? History will remember the Khmer Rouge and their notorious Killing Fields that followed the Vietnam war as one of civilization's darkest moments. Genocide on a grand scale, an estimated 1.7 million Cambodians perished. The Trap of Saving Cambodia serves as a wake-up call to the world, and forces us to question our role in what is really happening in this beautiful, tradition-rich corner of Southeast Asia. Included in the film are interviews with David Chandler, Elizabeth Becker, Youk Chang, Vann Nath, Joseph Mussemelli and Robert Petit. Find out more at the film's website here.
Tim Sorel films an interview with Vann Nath in March 2008 at S-21

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

the irony of the film is, that it mainly gives a voice to all the foreigners who have fallen into the trap, instead of to the Cambodians who are really affected!

July 2, 2012 at 10:05 AM  

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