Atambua is an Indonesian border town where thousands of East Timorese have sought refuge. This
sensitive and poetic depiction of the lives of the refugees and their scattered families is the latest by
an acclaimed director from Indonesian cinema's new generation.
East Timor was occupied by Indonesia for many years. A referendum was held in 1999 and
independence was achieved in 2002, but in 1999 250,000 refugees poured into Atambua in West
Timor. Catholicism is strong there and Christianity's presence is conspicuous in this film, which is
imbued with the people's suffering and repose for the dead. A retrospective of Indonesian director Riri
Riza's work features in this year's Winds of Asia-Middle East.
- 25th Tokyo International Film Festival
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