February 20, 2017


The Killing Fields – 1984 | 136 mins | War, Drama | Colour


Plot Synopsis

The Killing Fields

Nominated for seven Academy Awards, the powerful story contained within Roland Joffé’s The Killing Fields is the screen adaptation of the somewhat-fictionalised memoirs of reporter Sydney Schanberg, a New York Times correspondent in Phnom Penh at the time of the Khmer Rouge uprising in the mid 1970′s.

War-torn Cambodia. Sydney Schanberg (Sam Waterston), a reporter working for the New York Times along with his interpreter colleague Dith Pran (Haing S. Ngor), tell the story of friendship and survival set against the most tragic events in the conflict. The Killing Fields is an often-harrowing account of civil war and its bloody aftermath once the Khmer Rouge has begun their take-over of Cambodia. Schanberg, along with photographer Al Rockoff (John Malkovich) and journalist Jon Swain (Julian Sands) are reporting US involvement in Cambodia, Schanberg persuades Pran to stay behind with him in Phnom Penh after the U.S. army evacuation even though this is putting his colleague at risk. Despite the protestations of the Western journalists and their efforts to make a fake passport for Pran, he is turned over to the Khmer Rouge, and struggles for survival when put to work in the ‘killing fields’. Schanberg returns to the United States and wins the Pulitzer Prize for his reporting. What follows is the story of his Pran’s struggle for survival and a guilty-ridden Schanberg’s attempts to rescue him.

Production Team

Roland Joffe: Director
Steve Spence: Art Direction
Roger Murray Leach: Art Direction
Chris Menges: Cinematography
Judy Moorcroft: Costume Design
Jim Clark: Editing
Chris Taylor: Makeup Department
Freddie Williamson: Makeup Department
Sophy Pradith: Makeup Department
Tommie Manderson: Makeup Department
Ken Lintott: Makeup Department
James Keeler: Makeup Department
Yvonne Coppard: Makeup Department
Ronnie Cogan: Makeup Department
Francisco Tarrega: Original Music
John Lennon: Original Music
Mike Oldfield: Original Music
David Puttnam: Producer
Roy Walker: Production Design
Bruce Robinson: Script
Dushko Indjic: Sound Department
Ian Fuller: Sound Department
Clive Winter: Sound Department
Bob Taylor: Sound Department
Niwat Sumneangsanor: Sound Department
Bill Rowe: Sound Department
Leonard Green: Sound Department
Eddy Joseph: Sound Department


Sam Waterston: Sydney Schanberg
Haing S Ngor: Dith Pran
John Malkovich: Al Rockoff
Julian Sands: Jon Swain
Craig T Nelson: Military attache
Spalding Gray: United States consul
Bill Paterson: Dr MacEntire
Athol Fugard: Dr Sundesval
Graham Kennedy: Dougal
Katherine Krapum: Chey Ser Moeum
Oliver Pierpaoli: Titony
Edward Entero: Chey Sarun

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