In rural Laos, a place of verdant forests and unexploded cluster bombs, ten-year-old Ahlo (Sitthiphon Disamoe) and his family are forced to leave their village to make way for a new dam. The crooked communist regime isn’t the only one with Ahlo in its sights: his granny is convinced he was born under a bad sign, and the evidence isn’t unconvincing, given the string of accidents, beatings and evictions he seems to attract.
After meeting up with another pair of refugees – orphan Kia (Loungnam Kaosainam) and her James Brown-aping uncle, Purple (the wired Thep Phongam) – Ahlo finally finds a purpose: to win the cash prize in a homemade-rocket-launching contest. Kim Mordaunt’s when-life-gives-you-landmines tale is light on well-drawn characters, but its performances, especially from the non-professional youngsters, more than light the fuse for the finale.
|Release date:||Friday March 14 2014|
Cast and crew