An independent Tamil documentary filmmaker living in Sri Lanka has been invited to the prestigious Cannes international film festival to screen his latest production.
Demons in Paradise is the result of ten years of work by Jude Ratnam, who for the first time is seeing the Civil war from the inside.
Sri Lanka 1983, Jude Ratman is five years old. On a red train, he flees the massacre of the Tamils instigated by the Pro-Sinhalese majoritarian government. Now a filmmaker, he takes the same train from South to North.
As he advances, the traces of the violence of the 26-year-old war and the one which turned the Tamil’s fight for freedom into a self-destructive pass before his eyes.
Reminiscing the hidden souvenirs of fighters and Tamil Tigers, he unveils the repressed memories of his compatriots, opening the door to a new era and making peace possible again.
Demons in Paradise joins a list of independent films, with a Tamil connection, to be presented at Cannes. One of the earliest was “Shadows of silence” by Pradeepan Raveendran from France in 2010. The most recent was the 2016 feature-length “A Yellow Bird” by Singaporean filmmaker K Rajagopal. In 2015, Jacques Audiard’s DHEEPAN, the powerful portrayal of three Tamil immigrants from Sri Lanka who illegally enter France in hope of leading a better life won the prestigious Palme d’Or.
The 70th Cannes Film Festival is scheduled to run from May 17-28.