COME AND SEE
runtime : 83 minutes
language : thai w/english sub
production : underDOC
year : 2019
Official Selection :
2019 Busan International Film Festival (World Premiere]
Wide Angle Documentary Competition
The clash between the largest and most controversial Buddhist temple in Thailand and the military government told through the eyes of devoted disciples.
Shaped like a round, golden spaceship, Dhammakaya is the largest and richest Buddhist temple in Thailand. With millions of followers, it has become an icon of Thai Buddhism and the mecca of all Buddhists in the world, yet it also reeks of suspicious money matters. In 2016, the abbot of Dhammakaya is charged with money laundering and acquisition of stolen properties. The ensuing clash between the military regime that tries to enforce the law and the all-powerful temple with many followers is intense.
Filmmakers Nottapon BOONPRAKOB investigates this incident from a rather unique point of view—he spotlights someone who may be considered a religious fanatic. The camera’s gaze, as it traverses across politics and religion, power and corruption, belief and blind faith, maintains a cold calmness of an investigator without a hint of emotion. The impressive directing creates a tense atmosphere, pointing out the evils of religion without criticizing the ignorant yet innocent fanatical followers.
(synopsis written by KANG Sowon - BIFF2019)