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Beyond Rangoon (1995)

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Laura is trying to pick up the pieces of her life after the murder of her husband and son, and goes on vacation with her sister to Burma. After losing her passport at a political rally, she... See full summary »

Director:

John Boorman
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2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Patricia Arquette ... Laura Bowman
U Aung Ko U Aung Ko ... U Aung Ko
Frances McDormand ... Andy Bowman
Spalding Gray ... Jeremy Watt
Tiara Jacquelina Tiara Jacquelina ... San San - Hotel Desk Clerk
Kuswadinata Kuswadinata ... Colonel at Hotel (as Kuswadinath Bujang)
Victor Slezak ... Mr. Scott
Jit Murad Jit Murad ... Sein Htoo
Ye Myint Ye Myint ... Zaw Win
Cho Cho Myint Cho Cho Myint ... Zabai
Johnny Cheah Johnny Cheah ... Min Han
Haji Mohd Rajoli Haji Mohd Rajoli ... Karen Father
Azmi Hassan Azmi Hassan ... Older Karen Boy
Ahmad Fithi Ahmad Fithi ... Younger Karen Boy
Adelle Lutz Adelle Lutz ... Aung San Suu Kyi
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Storyline

Laura is trying to pick up the pieces of her life after the murder of her husband and son, and goes on vacation with her sister to Burma. After losing her passport at a political rally, she is left on her own for a few days, during which time she falls in with students fighting for democracy. She and their leader, U Aung Ko, travel through Burma, whilst witnessing many bloody acts of repression by the dictatorship, in an attempt to escape to Thailand. Based on a true story. Written by James Hastie <jdh1000@cus.cam.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Truth has a witness

Genres:

Action | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for depiction of violent political oppression | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 August 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rangoon See more »

Filming Locations:

Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$23,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$5,750,110

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$14,700,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS | DTS | Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jodie Foster, Meryl Streep, and Michelle Pfeiffer were all considered for the lead role. See more »

Goofs

Some of the women are wearing men's longyi (skirts). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Laura Bowman: The trip was Andy's idea. It was easier to say yes than argue. Always that way with my sister. She meant well. Touch of the exotic east would get me away from all the things that reminded me of what happened. But it didn't. Where ever I looked, I saw only the moment when my life ended.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Underrated picture
6 March 2001 | by amoladSee all my reviews

This is one of the most underrated movies of the 1990s. If you allow yourself to identify with the Patricia Arquette character, you will find it to be a very moving story of a woman regaining a sense of purpose to her life, and finding a new will to live.

Arquette's performance is brave because it is purposefully "wooden" -- it's a way of defining her character's spiritual death, her complete lack of a desire to be alive. She moves through life like a zombie because her family has been murdered and she can't see the point of living. What is moving is how in the course of the story, she is reawakened -- by the Burmese landscape, by the beautiful quality of its people and landscapes, and by the primal choices she is forced to confront.

Boorman supports this visually (and Hans Zimmer supports it with one of his most gorgeous, haunting scores) with an often static camera and with a propensity to shoot through glass, windows, windshields, etc. We are on the outside looking in, just like Arquette.... until she finds herself deep in the jungle and is forced to choose whether or not to fight for her life.

I recommend the 1954 movie THE PURPLE PLAIN as well. It's a similar story in a similar setting, and makes for a fascinating comparison.


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