The highly anticipated film Hotboy Noi Loan va Cau Chuyen ve Thang Cuoi, Co Gai Diem va Con Vit (Lost in Paradise) boldly depicts the hardships of those living on the fringes of society by telling the story of Khoa, a rural man, who falls into the world of prostitution after being raped by two homosexual men.
Viewers are unsure if Khoa is lucky or unlucky when another gay man named Lam appears to help Khoa escape from his life on the edge.
The film is scheduled to screen at the Busan International Film Festival 2011′s A Window on Asian Cinemaon from today to Thursday.
This year, A Window on Asian Cinema section, which invited 49 films from 16 countries, will feature the next generation of filmmakers who will lead the Asian film industry into the future.
Entries from countries such as Viet Nam, India, the Philippines, Indonesia and China will reveal some of the newest in Asian film.
“Vu Ngoc Dang, a filmmaker popular for his entertaining drama series and films, directs [Lost in Paradise], and so this heavy subject with its fringe group is viewed through a lovely and light gaze.
Their unusual lives become understandable and universally recognisable,” said Park Sung-ho on the festival website.
Last month, Lost in Paradise was shown at the 36th Toronto International Film Festival’s Discovery Programme and it was also short listed for the Dragons and Tigers award at the Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) 2011 which will close on Friday.
“After two Vietnamese films screened at VIFF in 2009 and 2010, Adrift and Bi, Don’t Be Afraid, which were both daring in tackling sexual themes with a degree of candour, Lost in Paradise takes a step further,” said Tony Ryans, a cinema critic.
He wrote on the festival website filmguide.viff.org: “It’s the first Vietnamese film to offer a frank account of some aspects of gay life, although it’s not very sophisticated by international standards – neither sexually nor dramatically”.
Director Dang, a graduate of the HCM City Cinema School, already has blockbusters such as The Long Leg Girls (2004) and Beautiful to the last Centimetre (2009) to his credit. His first feature film was Vo Chong Chuot (Rat Couple).
He has also made several television series including Bong Dung Muon Khoc (Suddenly Want to Cry) and Ngoi Nha Hanh Phuc (Happy House), a Vietnamese version of the South Korean Full House series.
The script for Lost in Paradise was the fourth collaboration between Dang and actor Luong Manh Hai.