Marcel Camus’ BIRD OF PARADISE (1962, 95 min) – a spiritual journey into culture, myth, Buddhism, death, and reincarnation - was the first European feature film production in Cambodia.
Sok, a young and imaginative boy, leaves the Buddhist monkhood to seek a more adventurous life. Tith, a friendly fortune-teller, gives him a bird of paradise, which leads him to the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh.
The screen is constantly filled with moments of wonder and beauty whether it is the dragon boat races, Buddhist monks chanting, festivals, children playing, a kickboxing match, rickshaws on the quiet streets, a theatrical reenactment of the legend of Rama, Sita, Ravana, and Hanuman and finally a visit to the grandeur of Angkor Wat.
English subs, only at Meta.