When the 18-year-old Bora leaves his village to take a menial job on the construction sites of Koh Pich (Diamond Island) in Phnom Penh, he comes across the world of Cambodia’s emerging middle-class youth. Despite making new friends and appearing to form a bond with the lovely Aza, his city life is quickly complicated by an encounter with Solei, his estranged older brother who introduces him to his own colorful lifestyle.

»Diamond Island« is an exploration of modern Cambodian youth in all social classes, and a commentary on the country's current transition on the road to modernity. Chou displays an ambitious and daring technical style in his feature film debut with its stunning location work and wildly saturated fluorescent visuals reminiscent of Gaspar Noé’s »Enter the Void«. Chou’s film is a contemplative social portrait that maintains a sense of naturalism whilst also managing to be aesthetically pleasing with its rich blue and yellow palette.

Diamond Island poster
Title
Diamond Island
Director
Davy CHOU
Country
France, Cambodia, Germany
Length
101 min
Festival
2016
Section
Discovery
Language
Khmer
Premiere status
Nordic Premiere
Production year
2016
Cast
Sobon Noun, Cheanik Nov, Madezza Chhem
Producer
Charlotte Vincent, Kavich Neang, Hanneke Van Der Tas, Davy Chou, Jacky Goldberg, Sylvian Decouvelaer
Script
Davy Chou, Claire Maugendre

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