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Film Review, "First They Killed My Father"

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Ingrid Herskind
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Film Review, "First They Killed My Father"

As an AP United States History teacher, I have been looking for good films that depict the Cold War struggle in South East Asia. "First They Killed My Father" puts a true human face on the 1975 Cambodian struggle after the Khmer Rouge take over the country. I've often thought about the refugee issue surrounding the Vietnamese-Cambodian War and feel that my students would benefit from watching either pieces of this film or the whole film. Based on the book, "First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers" by Loung Ung, this film's strong commitment to storytelling and history would be great in contrast to the1984 British biographical drama "The Killing Fields."

I would definitely say that this film is better suited for more mature audiences due to the content and drama. I also think that students would benefit from reading some stories about the experience and learning the history behind the conflict.

clay dube
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Loung Ung - CSPAN interview

Thanks to Ingrid for drawing out attention to this film. The author of the book inspiring this film was interviewed on C-Span's Booknotes.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Harper Collins has issued a teaching guide for the book/film:

Here's the Netflix site for the film. It includes a trailer: