Sydney Schanberg is a New York Times journalist covering the civil war in Cambodia. Together with the local journalist Dith Pran, they cover some of the tragedy and madness of the war. When the American forces leave, Dith Pran sends his family with them, but stays behind himself to help Schanberg cover the event. As an American, Schanberg won't have any trouble leaving the country, but the situation is different for Pran; he's a local, and the Khmer Rouge are moving in.Written by
Murray Chapman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
He was a reporter for the New York Times whose coverage of the Cambodian War would win him a Pulitzer Prize for international reporting. But the friend who made it possible was half the world away with his life in great danger... This is the story of war and friendship, the anguish of a country and of one man's will to live. See more »
The French and Cambodian dialogue spoken throughout the film, especially during the French embassy scene and the scene in which Schanberg, Swain, Sarun, Rockoff and Pran are captured (Pran negotiates with the Khmer Rouge soldiers in both French and Cambodian) were neither dubbed nor subtitled in English during any of the film's subsequent VHS, DVD or streaming releases. Instead, the character John Swain translates some of the dialogue roughly into English throughout the Embassy scene, but not all of it. During the moment when Pran's passport is rejected, Swain says in French, "is there a problem?" and is responded with, "I'm very sorry, Sir", also in French, but much of the other non-English dialogue was more advanced. See more »
During the scenes depicting the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia, the Vietnamese airplanes shown are American T-33s and the Vietnamese tanks are American M-47s, neither of which would have been in the Vietnamese inventory. They would, however, have been in the inventory of Thailand (Royal Thai Air Force and Royal Thai Army), where the exterior shots were filmed. See more »
Cambodia. To many westerners it seemed a paradise. Another world, a secret world. But the war in neighboring Vietnam burst its borders, and the fighting soon spread to neutral Cambodia. In 1973 I went to cover this side-show struggle as a foreign correspondent of the New York Times. It was there, in the war-torn country side amidst the fighting between government troops and the Khmer Rouge guerrillas, that I met my guide and interpreter, Dith Pran, a man who was to change my life ...
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The Killing Fields is one of the most influential films of the 20th century. Its provocative and dangerous subject matter stresses the importance of communication and the freedom to communicate. Based on the Khmer Rouge occupation and genocide of Cambodia in the 1970's, the film tells the story of two men, catapulted into chaos and peril.
The movie is first and foremost, a historical account. The events are based off the true story of Dith Pran and Sydney Schanberg. Given that I had not known much about the Cambodian genocide of the 1970's prior to seeing this film, I must herald the piece as a successful feat of cinematography that served as both informational as well as inspirational. The film is believable, realistic, and heart wrenching. I immediately felt for the two main characters as they quickly exchanged trust and fell victim to the powers of political violence. While it is slightly romanticized, The Killing Fields still manages to produce a message with real life implications.
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