Reaping what they Sow | Bangkok Post: lifestyle

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Reaping what they Sow

One gritty and one lyrical, two new Thai films about farmers offer a timely portrait of rustic life as the government's rice scheme imbroglio deepens

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Rice is what has raised Thailand, but our staple crop hasn't raised many smiles in the Land of Smiles lately. When Uruphong Raksasad set out to make Pleng Khong Khao (The Songs Of Rice) two years ago, he didn't imagine that his documentary would acquire a timely resonance now that the epic mess of the government's rice-pledging scheme has become an escalating imbroglio and national embarrassment. Rice, the filmmaker believes, is the soul of the country, but the song it sings has unfortunately turned into a sad one. 

Uruphong Raksasad’s The Songs Of Rice documents Thailand’s rural culture.

"I didn't mean the film to have any sense of political irony," says Uruphong, an internationally-known documentary director. "And with all the bad news about rice at the moment, hopefully my film will show another dimension of what rice is, what it has been, to the farming society in this country."

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