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Cecil's Journey - DVD ONF/NFB


Catalogue Number:  NFB522523
Producer:  National Film Board Of Canada
Producers:  Peter d'Entremont, Kent Martin, Sally Bochner, Charles E. Doucet
Directors:  Rohan Fernando
Producing Agencies:  National Film Board of Canada (Montreal), Triad Film Productions Limited (Halifax)
Subject:  Arts, Diversity, Documentary, Geography, Global Studies, History, Politics, World History
Language:  English
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2001
Running Time:  54:05
Closed Captions:  Yes


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Rohan Fernando, a 26-year-old visual artist, leaves his home in Canada for a nine-week journey to Sri Lanka. The purpose of the trip is to take photos that will serve as inspiration for future paintings. Instead, it turns into a voyage of discovery in which he must confront the past he has all but forgotten, and in which long-buried family secrets are revealed.

Born in the northern town of Jaffna, he left the country with his family when he was only five. Now, he has returned for the first time--to a land that is both alien and shockingly familiar.

As Rohan (whose parents called him Cecil after they immigrated) discovers the intricate web of family relations binding him to caste, family and country, deep-seated questions about his own identity and self-image emerge.

Set against the backdrop of vicious fighting in the civil war between Tamil Tiger rebels and Sri Lankan government forces, Cecil's Journey is an intensely personal film with universal resonance. Informed by the perceptive eye Rohan has developed through his painting, this documentary challenges us to ask: What does it mean to be me?


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