Sailing a Sinking Sea
With director Olivia Owens Wyatt in person
Presented in collaboration with the Margaret Mead Film Festival
U.S. Dir. Olivia Owens Wyatt. 2015, 65 mins. In Thai, Burmese, Moken with English subtitles. The Moken are a seafaring community living among the islands of the Mergui Archipelago in the Andaman Sea, off the coast of Myanmar and Thailand. One of the smallest ethnic minority groups in Asia, they traditionally spend eight months out of the year in thatch-roofed wooden boats. Wholly reliant upon the sea, their entire belief system revolves around water. Sailing a Sinking Sea weaves a visual and aural tapestry of Moken mythologies and present-day practices. Viewers will swim under the sea past fishes and mermaids, sail boats across turquoise waters, land on thirteen different islands, step inside sea shanties on stilts, delve into the minds of shamans, become possessed through the worship of sea gods, dance between lovers, and emerge drenched in Moken mythology.
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