CHILD OF THE KILLING FIELDS is a documentary about Cambodia, its history and its people. The movie follows a few survivors of the Cambodian genocide in the 1970s as they describe fighting with the communists, escaping to a resettlement camp in Thailand and forced as children to fight in the civil war. The narrator was an abandoned child rescued by two Australian missionaries, who give him a family, an education and a new faith. The missionaries, John and Tess Castledine, deal with Cambodia’s chronic problems by developing educational programs and a sustainable aqua-culture project. This project allows families to become financially independent. The child, Jeremiah, becomes a leader to help the aqua-culture project.
CHILD OF THE KILLING FIELDS is a fascinating, inspiring documentary. The editing is superb, and the sound and music enhance the movie. There’s a clear premise, which drives a powerful plot. By the end of the documentary, it becomes clear that faith, family and the free market overcomes a multitude of cultural problems while communism and socialism become the ultimate cultural problem. MOVIEGUIDE® highly commends CHILD OF THE KILLING FIELDS.
(BBB, ACACAC, CC, V, S, N, M):
Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Very strong moral, anti-communist worldview with strong Christian elements, including overt positive references to Jesus, and a very strong free-market, pro-capitalist message;
No foul language;
Documentary scenes of violence, including photos from the Cambodian Holocaust and references to sex trafficking and violence;
References to sex trafficking and violence;
Brief upper nudity of children running around;
No alcohol use;
Smoking and/or Drug Use and Abuse:
No smoking or drugs; and,
Revealing portrayals of the evils of communism, paganism, and a life without God.
CHILD OF THE KILLING FIELDS is a fascinating documentary starting with the Cambodian genocide by Pol Pot and his communist minions and following through several stages of development of an abandoned child who becomes an advocate for the good, the true, the beautiful, and economic prosperity to solve the problems of Cambodia.
The movie is divided into sections. The first section is “Child of the Khmer,” discussing the ancient Cambodian civilization; “I Am a Child of War” detailing the experience of those who were forced to fight as child soldiers; and, finally leading up to “I Am a Child of Hope.” The Cambodian genocide of the late 1970s was one of the most horrific events in history. Communist leader Pol Pot killed up to three million Cambodians to get rid of anyone who wasn’t a doctrinaire, proletarian communist. Phnom Penh, the capital, was forcibly depopulated, and people, who could read write, add, subtract, do any business, or had any education, were killed to remove them as an obstacle to communism. Today, the Holocaust Museum in Phnom Penh chronicles in stark photographs and writings the horrors of the Cambodian genocide and has a tall tower of the skulls of many who were killed.
The movie follows the stories of a number of survivors of the genocide. They detail the experience of violence under the Khmer Rouge, the escape from the death squads to the relative safety of Thailand, and the subsequent civil war where children were forced to fight in ragtag armies. The voice of the film is an abandoned child, Jeremiah, who was found on the streets of Phenom Penh by two Australian missionaries when he was a baby. They give him a family, an education and a new faith. The missionaries, John and Tess Castledine, take in many abandoned children of Cambodia. They realize one of the root problems in Cambodia, that feeds the violence and the sex trafficking where even parents sell their children, is the persistent, malignant poverty. They deal with this by developing educational programs and a sustainable aqua-culture project, to go along with the preaching of the Gospel. This project allows families to become financially independent, so they become interested in keeping their children to help them with their new businesses. The documentary develops this free market answer through several sections that investigate and examine several detailed problems plaguing Cambodia.
The child, Jeremiah, grows to become a leader of his generation, developing the aqua- culture project to bring restoration to Cambodian society.
CHILD OF THE KILLING FIELDS is a fascinating, inspiring documentary. The editing is superb, and the sound and music enhance the movie. There’s a clear premise, which drives a very powerful plot. By the end of the documentary, it will be hard to dismiss the conclusion that faith, family and the free market overcomes a multitude of cultural problems while communism and socialism become the ultimate cultural problem. MOVIEGUIDE® highly commends CHILD OF THE KILLING FIELDS.
DVDs of the movie are available direct from the filmmaker at https://www.marionvineyard.org/child-of-the-killing-fields-film/.
Since You’re Here…
We’re sustained by donations averaging about $25. Only a tiny portion of our readers give. If everyone reading this right now gave $7, our fundraiser would be done within an hour. That’s right, the price of one movie ticket is all we need. If Movieguide® is useful to you, please take one minute to keep it online and growing. Thank you.
Movieguide® is a 501c3 non-profit and all donations are tax-deductible.