The Missing Picture Rithy Panh, 2013, France/Cambodia, 92 min., French & English Sunday, Nov. 24, 4 p.m., Webster U./Moore Director Rithy Panh was an 11-year-old when the Khmer Rouge took over Cambodia in 1977. Forced from Phnom Penh, his family later died in a refugee camp, and Panh, the sole survivor, fled to Thailand in 1979. After moving to Paris, Panh became interested in film, and his work has focused tightly on life under the Khmer Rouge and the terrible legacy of Pol Pot's regime. "The Missing Picture" represents Panh's quest to find a photograph taken during that 1975-79 reign of terror, but because the Khmer Rouge attempted to scrub clean all visual evidence of the atrocities, the search proves difficult. Absent a significant filmed record, in an effort to document the truth, Panh uses handmade clay figurines and detailed dioramas to detail the horrific events of those years. Winner of the Un Certain Regard prize at this year's Cannes Film Festival, "The Missing Picture" has played the fall's most prestigious fests, including New York, Toronto, and Telluride. Citing Panh's documentary as one of the "essential titles" at this year's New York Film Festival, the Times' Manohla Dargis writes: "With extraordinary grace, he tells his story and that of his ravaged country, using archival visual material, a heartbreakingly intimate narration (spoken by another man in mellifluous English) and small clay figures that, as they are whittled away, become stand-ins for the men, women and children subjected to incomprehensible horror."
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