PODCAST| Angelo Acerbi interviews Anucha Boonyawatana, director of the film Malila: The Farewell Flower.
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Anucha Boonyawatana has a delicate voice, as his film is. The love story he narrates develops at a slow and mesmerising pace. The art of Bai Sri is so complex and fascinating but tragic in its own way, as the love between the two characters will be. We will discover traditions of meditation and some unexpected harsh ones, as Anucha tells us.
Malila: The Farewell Flower: Bai Sri are elaborately-folded flower arrangements, made with banana leaves and jasmine blossoms, symbolizing love and virtue in Thai Buddhist philosophy. Though visually stunning, they tend to wither very fast. Pitch and Shane, who once were lovers, know this only too well. After being separated for many years, they revive their relationship by making these floral ornaments together. While Shane is still recovering from the end of his marriage and the death of his daughter, Pitch is struggling with his own tragedy: he has just discovered he is terminally ill. To escape from the pain they are both suffering, they decide to return to the times they were together, a past that has never seemed so far off: past and present alternate like a hallucination. But when Shane finds out that Pitch is dying, he decides to become a Thai monk for life. A movie with an elegiac and melancholy tone, poised between existential pain and the contemplation of that pain.