Rated: R for violence. Reviewed by: Chris Release date: August 25, 1995 Released by: Columbia Pictures
Patricia Arquette plays an American doctor who takes a trip to the Far East to help her get over the murder of her husband and young son.
The film starts out slowly with Laura (Arquette) narrating her feelings of depression as she follows her sister and their tour group in the country of Burma. The story quickly turns into an intriguing drama when Laura's passport is stolen and she isn't allowed to leave the country. Her group departs and Laura is to meet up with them the next day; after she gets a new passport at the American Embassy.
Having a day to herself, Laura meets an elderly guide and persuades him to show her an out-of-the-way monastery. While there, they discover that Rangoon, Laura's departure city, was the scene of a bloody massacre between the military and students fighting for democracy and the train station has been closed down. From here on, Laura and her guide are caught up in an unbelievable dangerous adventure.
The film depicts Laura's change from a woman who has little to live for, to a woman who strives, at all costs, to survive.
Based on actual events in 1988, Burma was held under military rule, and the people, lead by a strong student movement, fought vigorously for the right to have free elections.
As all news broadcasts from the country are barred, I knew little of the Burmese plight, and was engrossed by the story of this brave woman and dedicated people. Every frame of the film was absorbing and I could't wait to find out what happened to these heroic people.