Shooting outside of Thailand — in faraway Colombia — for the first time in his career, Apichatpong Weerasethakul makes his English and Spanish language debut with MEMORIA, co-winner of the Jury Prize at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. Spanning an atemporal, apolitical space of the narrative, MEMORIA centers on Jessica (Tilda Swinton), a Scottish orchid farmer visiting her sister in Bogotá. One livid morning at daybreak, Jessica is torn from sleep by a loud bang resembling the reverberating sound of a large stone ball falling on metal. This haunting sound dispels her sleep for days, calling her identity into question and guiding her from recording studios to secluded villages. Character-driven (unlike Weerasethakul’s previous films), MEMORIA challenges and enriches the director’s way of making movies. Weerasethakul weaves his signature serene narrative style into a carefully designed land-and-soundscape that captures the elusive genius of the locus with precise, perfect simplicity.
“When we say a film is kinetic, we are usually describing the effect of its images on the viewer. The kineticism of Apichatpong Weerasethakul's MEMORIA is auditory. So overwhelming is its impact that it would be ridiculous to say we watched or saw this movie. No: We listened to it, and the listening was accompanied by seeing.” —Amy Taubin, Artforum “...Because Weerasethakul’s work calls for a particular kind of surrender, I did something I don’t think I’ve ever done in a theater before: I knelt before the screen. I abandoned my front-row seat and sank to my knees, supplicating myself before the cinematographer Sayombhu Mukdeeprom’s gorgeous, otherworldly images.” —Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times