Irrawaddy Mon Amour

DIRECTORS: Nicola Grignani, Valeria Testagrossa, Andrea Zambelli

World Premiere

Beauty and defiance blossom in this enchanting documentary about love and marriage on the banks of the Irrawaddy River in Myanmar/Burma. Kyauk Myaung is a unique gay-friendly village, where trans activist and shaman Myo Nyunt fiercely protects “the Third Sex” in an alliance with the local Buddhist monastery. Winsome watermelon vendor Soe Ko and handsome construction worker Saing Ko want to be married. More ominous than family opposition, the country’s military junta is the real threat to their bond. Under its rule, a person can be sentenced to a minimum of ten years in prison for engaging in consensual gay sex, and of course same-sex marriage is illegal. But things are changing in Myanmar, with longtime human rights activist and stateswoman Aung San Suu Kyi poised at the threshold of a new regime. In this environment, Myo Nyunt helps organize a pioneering gay meeting and a radiant wedding ceremony complete with the blessings of three monks, colorful dance performances, and a transcendent ritual of floating candles. As trans patriarch and teacher Thet Htar Phyu says, “Tell them that our love flows over men like the Irrawaddy River—it never stops flowing.”

— Frako Loden

In Burmese with English subtitles.

AT&T Audience Award Text Voting Code: D307

Co-presented by:
American Jewish World Service
Center for Asian American Media

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