SEASSI 2013 Film Series
Tuesdays June 18 - July 9, 7:00 - 9:00pm, 206 Ingraham Hall
Tuesdays & Thursdays July 16 - July 25, 7:00 - 9:00pm, 206 Ingraham Hall
More detail on the films will be available soon. (updated 6/9/13)
Tuesday, June 18, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 206 Ingraham Hall. Free and open to the public with discussion following the films.
Four Burmese Short Films:
Fallow. dir. Lin Maw Dar, 2011. Burmese with English subtitles. 10:45 min.
Click in Fear. dir. Sai Kyaw Khaing, 2011. Burmese with English subtitles. 9:50 min.
Rope. dir. Minn Thaik, 2011. Burmese with English subtitles. 6:00 min.
Ban that Scene .dir. Waing, 2011. Burmese with English subtitles. 17:30 min.
Something different: Four short films from Burma, all originally shown at "Art of Freedom" film festival in 2011 organized in part and presided over by Aung San Suu Kyi, for which she obtained special permission from government film censors to show material which would otherwise have been banned. Come out and see some creative expression by Burmese filmmakers that is rarely seen anywhere...these shorts are well-made and thought-provoking, definitely worth an hour or so out of your time!
Tuesday, June 25, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 206 Ingraham Hall. Free and open to the public with discussion following the film.
Black Silk (Phrae Dam). dir. Rattana Pestonji, 1961. Thai with English subtitles. 118 min.
Phrae Dam is considered to be both the first Thai film noir and also the finest work of director Rattana Pestonji, known as the “father of modern Thai film.” It's a classic misadventure of bad decisions, a dark tale of what happens when one gets involved with the wrong people, flavored with a number of uniquely Thai elements. Most of the language is natural and clear, making the film a great chance for Thai language students to do some listening practice.
Tuesday, July 2, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 206 Ingraham Hall. Free and open to the public with discussion following the film.
San Lazaro. dir. Wincy Aquino Ong, 2011. Filipino with English subtitles. 98 min.
A short film this week, nevertheless, it's one that packs a wallop. Here are some quotes from the Philippines Esquire review of the film: “Wincy Ong’s San Lazaro...pretty much ignores every horror trend and treads its own path into the genre. It is a remarkably strange film that offers curious moviegoers a psychic voyage through the director’s unhinged imagination... The plot is pretty simple: Slacker Sigfried (played by the director himself) takes a break from learning stuff off Youtube to help his old friend Limuel (Ramon Bautista) deliver his demon-possessed brother to his exorcist uncle in San Lazaro. As strange as that might sound, the summary comes nowhere close to describing the weirdness that follows... The horror, such as it is, doesn’t come from creepy things hiding behind doors. It comes from a general feeling that something isn’t quite right about the world. The film has an odd pace, and revels in the smallest of details. There’s a shaky rhythm to everything, each scene seemingly designed to undermine the audience’s sense of timing. We’re familiar with all these elements, but the film just refuses to play by the rules...”
Tuesday, July 9, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 206 Ingraham Hall. Free and open to the public with discussion following the film.
Dead Time (Kala). dir. Joko Anwar, 2007. Indonesian with English subtitles. 102 min.
This week's film is a film noir-style mystery/thriller by highly acclaimed director Joko Anwar, who also directed the comedy Janji Joni and wrote Quickie Express, both shown in previous years in the SEASSI Film Series. Kala was shown at numerous international film festivals in Southeast Asia and the West, and garnered consistently positive reviews, both in Indonesia and abroad.
Kala takes place in a nameless country in a state of political, social and natural disaster-related chaos. A journalist discovers a secret which holds the key to the chaos, but everyone he reveals the secret to dies a mysterious death. There's a solution to this cycle, but in the end it's a race against time if the journalist is to survive himself. Kala is tense and imaginative, with stunning cinematography.
Tuesday, July 16, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 206 Ingraham Hall. Free and open to the public with discussion following the film.
Hmoob Txoj Kev Ncajncees . 2005. dir Nkaujsee Hawj. Hmong with English subtitles. 96 min.
A “period piece” romantic drama with a few supernatural overtones. Similar in tone and production style to Chinese TV historical dramas, and to the Hmong film “The Legendary Script” (which we showed at SEASSI in 2011), minus the fight scenes.
Thursday, July 18, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 206 Ingraham Hall. Free and open to the public with discussion following the film.
At the Horizon (Pay Thang). dir. Anysay Keola, 2011. Lao with English subtitles. 101 min.
A gritty, realist drama/thriller about the conflict between rich and poor in modern Laos. This film is quite an achievement, as it's the first feature film made by a Lao director with full Lao production crew, writer, and actors in many years.
Tuesday, July 23, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 206 Ingraham Hall. Free and open to the public with discussion following the film.
Buffalo Boy (Můa Len Trâu). dir. Minh Nguyễn-Võ, 2004. Vietnamese with English subtitles. 102
A beautifully-filmed, contemplative coming-of-age story which takes place in the floodplains of far southern Vietnam in 1940.
Thursday, July 25, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 206 Ingraham Hall. Free and open to the public with discussion following the film.
Shadow of the Violin (Sramaol Violong). dir. Ka An, ca. 2007. Khmer with English subtitles. 134 min.
This mid/late 2000s film by director Ka An is in some ways typical of Khmer romantic [melo]dramas (always with a bit of comedy thrown in), but in both production values and script, this one is a cut above the rest. First of all, the director does a great job of incorporating Phnom Penh--in its day-to-day, real-life gritty essence--as a “character” in the film. Secondly, it seems like the director could not decide at first between making which of two films: one a drama about a social worker trying to help a wayward youth out of a life of drugs and crime (a serious problem in modern Phnom Penh), and the other the story of a young couple, the girl's parents' desire for the girl to study abroad and marry a man of their choosing standing in the way of their love. So he made both films (albeit linking one story to the other...somewhat)! One thread kind of gets dropped halfway through, but it's all still interesting to watch. Finally, unlike most Khmer films made for a local audience, this one actually has English subtitles, so you can witness it all for yourself!
SEASSI 2012 Film Series
SEASSI 2011 Film Series
SEASSI 2010 Film Series
SEASSI 2009 Film Series
SEASSI 2008 Film Series
SEASSI 2007 Film Series
2005 Film Series
direct any questions to the SEASSI Program Coordinator:
Center for Southeast Asian Studies
University of Wisconsin-Madison
207 Ingraham Hall
1155 Observatory Dr.
Madison, WI 53706
phone: (608) 263-1755