Another winner of the coveted Rotterdam Tiger Award, Sivaroj Kongsakul’s first feature Eternity explores the burgeoning relationship of the director’s own parents as teenagers in rural Thailand. Structured as a triptych that begins with his father returning home after his own death, the film explores the cyclical (or eternal) understanding of love, life and death propagated by Buddhist theology and Eastern philosophy. With deliberate and contemplative pacing, Kongsakul demonstrates an ability for sensitively capturing delicate and transient moments that cannot be scripted or rehearsed, but arise spontaneously as the result of human interaction, both with other humans as well as with natural and built environments. As the film slips into an ethereal world where each small gesture expresses its own logic, it begins to develop a quiet and fragile tension that is slowly released as days turn into decades and children turn into parents.
Night WatchDirected by Danaya Chulphuthiphong.
Thailand, 2015, DCP, color.
An ordinary night during the coup d’état. The 2014 Thai coup d’état on May 22, which was declared after months of anti-government protests, is warmly welcomed by the middle class in Bangkok. – DC