What is the last documentary you saw? Was it on TV or in cinema? How did it touch you? I bet you can’t answer all these questions at one take! Yet, if you go and watch “The Perfect Motion” (TPM) right now in a nearby cinema (in Cambodia), you’ll feel different about the documentary. And, after watching the whole movie, I learned why TPM is worth your time, money and spirit. Read this post along for five main reasons you should check it out.
1- Familiarity Prevails
The film starts off with a familiar topic: Royal Ballet (របាំព្រះរាជទ្រព្យ). Most Cambodian people have seen or at least heard of this classical dance, long attached to the Royal Family. I must say what triggers our comfort is all those little mysteries behind its historic evolution. For example, do you know who was our first Apsara dancer?
2- Accessibility through Common Subjects
This sounds similar to the first feature. Yet, what I meant here is by its storytelling techniques. The Khmer words and voices were carefully chosen to touch our heart beats. Just when I heard Master Savay say, “I can be die and be reborn. But arts should never die.”, this statement has already given me some goose bumps.
3- Unexpected Insight
Of course, we somehow enjoy the dance once performed. Aside from getting its lyrics, how many of us have embraced the meanings of those moves, from “blossoming” to “fall”? Above all, how much do we know they are related to natural life cycle? Historically speaking, I never realized the struggle of another master, when she kept bending her fingers in secrecy during Khmer Rouge regime.
4- Punchy Statements
I already quoted one above. The most familiar one is, “If culture is ruined, our nation disappears.” I admit most of our youth have taken this lightly from our school days. After watching the whole movie, I learned how such a slogan has personalized our senior artists and their lives. It feels like they live or even die for the sake of their cherished arts.
5- Directing with a Clear Stand
Somehow, I was a bit lucky to know one of this film’s producers. He told me, before I watched it, that “The Perfect Motion” is about “transmission”. My immediate reaction was, “This can’t be true as I find few youth interested in such an art form”. Following the screening session, I changed my view and concluded that it is NOT about how many we are, but how much it matters to us.
In a nutshell, you can find more features from this movie than I described here, on your own. Once again, should I remind you to go and see it now? Of course, don’t just stop at those trailer, interviews or testimonials. Go live it as arts make us who we are today and, for sure, tomorrow!