May 29, 2023

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Iranian Artists Forum to review “The Killing Fields” on Khmer Rouge

TEHRAN – “The Killing Fields”, British director Roland Joffé’s 1984 acclaimed drama about the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia, will be reviewed at the Iranian Artists Forum in Tehran on Monday.

Screenwriter Jaber Qasemali will speak on the topic “Ideology Slaughterhouse” after a screening of the film, which will begin at 5 pm, the forum announced.

The film was produced based on the experiences of the local reporter Dith Pran and the American journalist Sydney Schanberg.

Sam Waterston and Haing S. Ngor star as Schanberg and Pran respectively.

New York Times journalist Schanberg is on assignment covering the Cambodian Civil War, with the help of local interpreter Pran and American photojournalist Al Rockoff. When the U.S. Army pulls out amid escalating violence, Schanberg makes exit arrangements for Pran and his family. Pran, however, tells Schanberg he intends to stay in Cambodia to help cover the unfolding story, a decision he may regret as the Khmer Rouge rebels move in.

The adaptation for the screen was written by Bruce Robinson and the musical score was written by Mike Oldfield and orchestrated by David Bedford.

“The Killing Fields” received Oscar nominations in seven categories, including best film and best director.

However, it brought Haing S. Ngor the Oscar for best supporting actor, Chris Menges the Oscar for best cinematography and Jim Clark the Oscar for best film editing.

“The Killing Fields” holds a 93 percent rating at the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, based on 40 reviews, with the consensus, “Artfully composed, powerfully acted, and fueled by a powerful blend of anger and empathy, ‘The Killing Fields’ is a career-defining triumph for director Roland Joffé and a masterpiece of cinema.”

Critic Roger Ebert wrote in the Chicago Sun-Times, “The film is a masterful achievement on all the technical levels; it does an especially good job of convincing us with its Asian locations, but the best moments are the human ones, the conversations, the exchanges of trust, the waiting around, the sudden fear, the quick bursts of violence, the desperation.”

Photo: Sam Waterston as Sydney Schanberg and Haing S. Ngor as Dith Pran.


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