Angelina Jolie's "First They Killed My Father" is a film that is close to her heart and to the Cambodian people. It is a story that is based on the Khmer Rouge cruelty that led to the Cambodian genocide.
There were survivors of the Pol Pot regime that have lived to tell the gross savagery of the rebels. One of them is Loung Ung from whose story the film was based according to Phnom Penh Post.
Ung is a young girl when it happened. She is the daughter of a high-ranking military official. She and her six siblings were living in affluence and comfort until the time that the Khmer Rouge seized their city. The family has to escape and live in hiding. They have to let go of their social status because her father was a target being a high-ranking official of the Cambodian army. Finding it hard to hide as a big family, they have to disperse so that all may live.
Loung Ung was later trained to become a soldier in a work camp while the rest of his family was into hard labor in camps. When the Vietnamese defeated the rebels, the Ung family was reunited. The seven children all became strong and resilient those made them all succeed in later life.
When the film was seen by those who survived, they shared that the movie depicts the real struggle that they have experienced. Two million people were killed within the period of four years. One survivor said that it was like her acting her real experiences in the movie. The pain was again felt and the horror came back to life.
Angelina Jolie used to visit Cambodia and she felt compassion for the people. In fact, her eldest son Maddox Jolie-Pitt is a Cambodian. He was one of the executive producers as the credits say in the movie. According to Metro, his work in the film was his first ever real job. Jolie said that his son was very interested in the project. He became a hands-on crew of the production team.
Angelina Jolie's "First They Killed My Father" is a must-see movie, a heartbreaking account of the extent of man's cruelty but also a story of heroism and human strength.