Burmese Classic Movies 2014Myanmar Classics 2014
Yangon's Forbidden Movies from Billy Wilder to the battleship Potemkin behind the scenes | Post Magazine
You may think a strange call to roar from a garden in the heart of Yangon, the capitol of military-held Myanmar, but the remember! The International Film Heritage Festival, which seeks to open a dialog on the serious restrictions that still captivate the creative process in the state, is itself incompatible.
Charlie Chaplin's strong vocalist, in the 1940 movie The Great Dictator, swings off a huge canvas in Maha Bandula Park, across from Yangon City Hall, in the midst of a multitude of thouands. Not so long ago, seeing one of the overseas movies on the street could have resulted in a prison sentence, but Myanmar has undergone a change.
One of many disputed movies being shown in Yangon, the Franco-Burmese crew has curated the fifth issue of the event and chosen a bold theme: movies that have been forbidden at least anywhere in the atlantic. There are sixty movies shown in theaters and in open-air. In addition to less risky samples of visiting film-makers such as Tsai Ming-liang from Taiwan and Tan Pin Pin from Singapore, the program will include movies by Luis Buñuel, a film directed by the British film-maker who was under threat from the Nazi regimes; Sergei Eisenstein's battleship Potemkin (1925), which was outlawed in the Soviet Union;
The old EU and US movies that are shown are perhaps a surprise, dealing with issues that are all too easy for the locals to understand: battle and famine during the war (battleship Potemkin), societal disparities and an impracticable marriages (You Can't Take It With You, 1938), the disgrace of being pregnant outside marriages (One, Two, Three) and the recurring issue of being politically imprisoned.
There is a lot of clapstick in movies whose dialog is incomprehensible. "A moviegoer in the'60s said she didn't speak English after seeing an untitled Frank Capra one. The plan for the event, which took place from November 3 to 12, took place as the recent Myanmar raw gyaminority crises began to unfurl.
The censor still holds true for all of Myanmar's culture, especially movies. "There' s a shot in a direct-to-video movie, Mike San, Kyaik Lan Go Yway ["be bath, choose your own way"], where the cops were too slow after a homicide [.....] the executive said it wasn't a good picture of the police," says the young filmmaker Mg Sun, whom I meet in the nice but run-down Waziya theater from the 20s, which is the oldest one in Yangon and where most of the festival's movies are shown.
Since more than half of the country's masculine community entered the monastic community at some point, the movie hit a chord. Also during the festivities there will be sexual censorship. Spectators have to keep their fingers crossed for a few moments while Laura Harring and Naomi Watts are kissing and stroking each other in the Mulholland Drive (2001) gay community and Tsai's urine ating men - a recurring topic in the director's filming.
A Simple love story, an impartial native film that represents a romantic scandal between a wild child and a female transsexual, was honored at the yearly Wathann Film Festival in Yangon last year. There is no longer a black list of film people and producers in the state, and film-makers no longer have to file the screenplay of a film with the censor prior to filming.
But after a quick opening in 2008, many resources agreed, after Suu Kyi's semi-democratic regime came to power last year, there has been renewed tightening of restrictions. "so we could speak. For this purpose, a number of workshop and conferences on the subject of censure were organized for the Memor! group.
This event brings together members of the powerful authority and the performers who censor them at a dinner at the Sule Shangri-La in Yangon. "It is a unique occasion for this kind of open conversation between cinema professionals and artists," says former Grace Swe Zin Htaik, member of the Committee on Human Rights and sponsor of the event.
While insisting that she join the executive committee to alter the system of censure from within, Swe Zin Htaik approves. But without disavowing these questions, the artist argues that there is no satisfying answer to this censor. We' ve got a gag..... about these films, the'Films for Peace', as they say. They are called'peaceful films'.....
The film must mirror the director's own point of views, it cannot be monitored. Thaid Dhi, like most filmmakers of his own family, doesn't believe in the old socialistic notion that movies should teach you. There is a new act of censure that proposes sweeping changes - an evaluation system instead of sweeping censure - under debate in MEPs.
Not many Myanmese today recall the era when their movies were regarded as the most progressive in the area. A1's first full-length full-length portrait of the burial of U Tun Shein, a Burmese independent chief, and the studio's first movie, Love and Liquor (1920), a movie that pays tribute to gaming and drinking in the lives of an average man, were a great comeback.
By the early 1970s, Burmese studio produced about 100 movies a year. But according to the National Archives Department, 90 percent of monochrome film rolls have been either completely or irreparably wasted. The Emerald Jungle (1934) and Phyo Chit Lin (My darling, 1950), who proved to be great successes at the event.
"We' re looking forward to a resurrection of this Burmese gold era of cinema," says Duval. In order to do this, regional filmmakers and manufacturers need to obtain transnational funding, co-production agreements and, in some cases, external technological know-how. "It is important to work with interpreters, producers," says Midi Z, a Taiwanese filmmaker whose movie Ice Poion (2014) will be shown at the Sule Shangri-La meeting in the foyer.
A highlight of the event is the Myanmar Screenplay Fund (MSF), an awards for the best screenplay by a young native who receives $10,000 and assistance in the development of the program into a screen. "We' re looking for tales that are specific to this land, this civilization, but also sufficiently versatile to be universally understood," says Isabelle Glachant, a Beijing-based filmmaker and member of the MSF panel of judges, most of whom work in Asia.
Non-governmental organizations and non-governmental organizations are also important donors for young independent filmmakers, but they also try to support a cause - for example the laws of non-governmental organizations or freedom in areas of conflicts - excluding the film-maker' s or author' s visions. The members of the panel are chosen on the basis of their experiences with Asiatic filmmakers and their openness.
MAINSTRAM MANYANMESE mainstram manyanmese movie theaters produce a decade of bad-grade movies a year, according to movie theaters. There are a number of experienced filmmakers in autonomous cinemas who have only just begun to perform at major European and world film-filaments. "Burmese theater cannot advance without close cooperation between majorstream and indie cinema," says Swe Zin Htaik.
Disappointedly, the major filmmakers, actresses and productions who have been asked to the event have not appeared. In a few years' time we can be back in global theater as important comedians.