Ten year old Laotian boy Ahlo is believed to be cursed – whatever disaster occurs, he is blamed for it. When his family lose their home, he meets orphan Kia and her drunken uncle Purple (named for his purple suit), and this rag-tag group travel through their war-torn country in search of a better life. The opportunity to enter the (real life) Rocket Festival prompts Ahlo to build a giant rocket, hoping to win the grand financial prize and also bring hope to his family.
A heart-warming piece of cinema, this drama was the Australian entry for Best Foreign Language movie at the 2014 Academy Awards. Filmed in Laos and featuring a stunning performance from newcomer Disamoe as Ahlo, it’s both moving and low-key, magical and realistic. Lovely.
Is The Rocket suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...