Pol Pot Dancing

Pol Pot Dancing

26th TIDF: World Premiere

A star dancer at the Cambodian royal court lovingly raises her husband’s little brother as her own son. Decades later, as a forced laborer under the oppressive rule of Khmer Rouge, she discovers that her foster son is none other than Pol Pot. The mass purges of the regime (spanning from 1975 to 1979 – Pol Pot annihilated 25% of Cambodia’s population) are intertwined with painful memories of the relatives of the bloodthirsty dictator, who today stage an impressive dance performance depicting an encounter between the leader of the Khmer Rouge and his foster mother. In this stunning documentary, valuable archival material is seamlessly combined with the images of the dancers, the traditional costumes, and the descriptions of the deep significance behind this major cultural expression of the Cambodian people, offering a flawless outcome, one that is profoundly melancholic, beautiful, and yet at the same time tragic. Art serves as pain relief for the greatest open wounds of History.

Screening Schedule

No physical screenings scheduled.

Direction: Enrique Sánchez Lansch
Script: Enrique Sánchez Lansch
Cinematography: Marcus Winterbauer
Editing: Julia Oehring
Sound: Patrick Veigel, Sølve Huse-Amundsen
Music: Christoph M. Kaiser, Julian Maas
Production: Fruitmarket, Up North, ZDF/ARTE
Producers: Arne Birkenstock, Laryssa Stone
Co-producers: Christian Aune Falch, Torstein Parelius, Ingrid Galadriel Aune Falch
Format: DCP
Color: Color
Production Country: Germany, Norway
Production Year: 2024
Duration: 102'
Contact: New Docs

Enrique Sánchez Lansch


2004 Rhythm Is It! (co-direction)
2007 The Realm Orchestra – The Citizens of Berlin Philharmonics and the National Socialism
2012 Ouvertüre 1912 (TV)
2021 A Symphony of Noise
2021 Inside the Uffizi (co-direction)
2024 Pol Pot Dancing