Short Film Review: Burn Boys (2020) by Kaung Myat Thu Kyaw

After the passing away of their mom, two brothers go to their ex-soldier father for the primary time. They carry a jar of sea water and stalks of corn to attempt to make him keep in mind his darkish previous. When he was within the Air Drive, he raped their mom whereas the military was raping and plundering the houses of the Karen minority.

For almost all of its temporary runtime, Kaung Myat Thu Kyaw’s “Burn Boys” is an enigma. Why do the brothers carry these random issues? Do they imply one thing or they’re included to make the film bizarre and “artsy”? Are they ultimately linked with the Karen twins Johnny and Luther Htoo? Are they there to allow us to take into consideration them or just to make the quick extra surreal? Or concerning the conflicts on the finish of the 90s, and as such, make us piece collectively what group they belong to and what folks their father comes from? How their dad and mom met? The unusual aesthetic employed by the director doesn’t assist us attain any solutions. The alternative. The odd, however all the time nice selections he makes for the presentation of the movie make it all of the tougher to understand.

Visually, there may be nearly each method one might consider – sluggish movement, severely over- and underexposed photographs, grainy and digital-looking ones, even some particular results in direction of the tip. All of that outcomes not in a kitschy mess, however in a delightful hodgepodge, largely because of the sufficient cinematography by Thu Ya Aung and Yupa Mo Mo. This additionally makes it a tiring expertise, particularly for an eleven minute movie, primarily due to the visible assault that some scenes current.

The appearing is fairly surreal too. The actions of the 2 males who play the brothers are nearly completely synchronic. They transfer as one, communicate as one, their garments are additionally nearly the identical. It’s a bit bizarre to have a look at, however works very properly throughout the unusual world created by the film. Solely on the climax does the magical sync between them break and the 2 begin appearing individually.

Aurally, “Burn Boys” is fairly bizarre too. The sound of some scenes is severely out of sync, whereas others are deafeningly silent. Slightly than a fluke or enhancing mistake by Kaung Myat Thu Kyaw, it appears to be achieved on goal. This all elevates the sensation that the characters usually are not regular they usually inhabit a world that isn’t both. In a way, the 2 brothers could be taken as ghosts, or perhaps possessed by their Karen ancestors to enact vengeance on their Burmese oppressors. And enacting vengeance they do, not by bodily violence, just like the Burmese do, however by making them keep in mind what they’ve achieved prior to now. And that is way more highly effective, as a result of it forces them to stay with the savage acts they’ve been committing for the previous seven many years.



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