Hanoi, Vietnam -- (SBWIRE) -- 09/10/2013 -- A new joint Laotian and Australian film called “The Rocket” focusses on the country’s rocket festivals and features a stunning performance by a ten year old Laotian boy called Sitthiphon “Ki” Disamoe. This former street kid plays the part of Ahio, who is blamed for many of his family’s short comings until he enters the traditional Rocket Festival and finds redemption. The film is certainly striking a chord with the world’s movie going public having won awards at Berlin International Film Festival. It has also received audience-voted prizes at New York's Tribeca Film Festival and in Australia, the Sydney Film Festival and the Melbourne International Film Festival.
It is a wonderful performance by the young Ki, and is sure to have changed his fortunes. However, it may be a while before his friends and neighbors get to see his work. The film has not been given permission for viewing within the People’s Democratic Republic, as some of the subject matter is considered too sensitive.
The backdrop to the film is the relocation of many people due to the country’s dam building program which is continuing apace, despite protestations from neighboring countries that will be affected. The film maker Kim Mordant admits difficulties in getting it screened but believes it will prevail. He said, “[Laos's dam industry] is worth hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars and it’s incredibly political at the moment. I just think it’s going to take some time before things settle down. Once that settles a little bit then it’ll probably get shown.”
The film opens in Australia on 29th September and at its core is the performance by the young boy. he plays a bit of a streetwise wheeler-dealer and his 9 year old friend the orphaned Kia, played by Loungnam Kaosainam. It is shot entirely in the Lao language and it is hoped this will not be a barrier to its success in Australia. Foreign films have worked before but the art-house movie scene is getting smaller and smaller due to financial constraints.
The story line is simple and involves a backdrop of the Vietnam War. Popular local actor Thep Phongam plays a colorful character called Purple. This is an army veteran who controversially fought on the US side during the conflict. Breaking into James Brown impersonations at the drop of a hat, he brings both humor and pathos to the storyline.
The Festival is a notoriously vivid and dangerous event where bets are wagered. It provides the ideal setting for the young Ki’s performance. With money danger and adventure on offer it is a compelling look at the way of life in Laos.
Hopefully it will get shown in Laos. This beautiful country deserves a change in fortunes and it s people could do with a feel good story in which, for once, they not the victims.
Copyright © 2005-2013 - SBWire, The Small Business Newswire - All Rights Reserved - Important Disclaimer
Contact Us: 888-4-SBWIRE (US) - 920-593-5640 (International)