In L’image manquante/The Missing Picture (Rithy Panh, 2013), Rithy Panh continues his exploration of the Cambodian genocide. Combining Khmer Rouge propaganda films, contemporary video footage and painted clay figurines in stunningly crafted—often multimedia—dioramas, the documentary couples ruminations on mediation, trauma, and history with Panh’s personal story. However, the film reaches beyond individual narrative and reflection, functioning as cinematic witness as it counters silences, fills historical gaps, and provides a testimony that is polyphonic and collective. And through his deployment of clips from his former films, Panh creates a sedimented text, suggestive of a past that refuses to stay past and of the magnitude of history, where any production of memory can both preserve and veil the lives of others.
MEDIATION AND REMEDIATION: LA PAROLE FILMÉE IN RITHY PANH'S THE MISSING PICTURE (L'IMAGE MANQUANTE)
Leshu Torchin is Senior Lecturer in Film Studies at the University of St. Andrews. She is the author of Creating the Witness: Documenting Genocide on Film, Video, and the Internet, the co-editor of Film Festivals Yearbook 4: Film Festivals and Activism, and is currently at work on the project Too Big to See concerning film and economic rights.
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Leshu Torchin; MEDIATION AND REMEDIATION: LA PAROLE FILMÉE IN RITHY PANH'S THE MISSING PICTURE (L'IMAGE MANQUANTE). Film Quarterly 1 September 2014; 68 (1): 32–41. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/fq.2014.68.1.32
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