Byamba Sakhya / 2013, Busan, Rotterdam, Anonimul, Asiatica Film Festival Rome, Camerimage, Dharmshala, Göteborg, Inverness, Mongolian Week Dortmund, Mooov Belgium, Melbourne, Munich, Seattle, Seoul Independent, Shanghai, Terracotta Far East Film Festival London, Vilnius, Warsaw, Washington DC, Zlín / 90'
Teenage boy Tsog lives in the slums outside Ulan Bator, selling milk from his neighbor in the nearby city to support his family, with whom he frequently quarrels. The flight of his imagination is Tsog's only solace— he spends hours drawing his hero, a young monk. After a fight with his parents Tsog flees to the city, where he settles on the roof of an apartment building. From this new vantage point he spots a beautiful but troubled young woman inhabiting a penthouse nearby. Seeking to intertwine their fates— to bridge the gap between their social, economic, and spiritual conditions— Tsog steals a remote which he uses to control the young woman's television set.
Correlating the adventures of a young man on the brink of adulthood with Mongolia's societal changes, Remote Control is an evocative allegory for a nation suspended between natural and urban landscapes, tradition and modernity. Byamba Sakhya's first narrative feature premiered at Rotterdam, Göteborg, Seattle, Shanghai, Munich, Warsaw, and Camerimage; Busan, where it won the New Currents Award; and Anonimul Romania, where it won Best Feature.
"Part Buddhist parable, part social-realist drama, Remote Control exposes both the divides and the invisible interconnectedness in a nation undergoing rapid modernization. It also boasts the sort of breathtakingly beautiful widescreen cinematography that deserves to be seen on a big screen… an excellent film from Mongolia"
"The film is beautifully, subtly drawn. The flatness of the urban streets and the wind-whipped rural slum Tsog leaves behind contrast strongly with the vivid colors of the boy's desires and dreams. The hypnotic score is used sparingly and chimes with the moods of the film, which feel real and unforced. Narratives are seemingly left hanging and nothing is spelt out, but the threads have been woven with considerable skill"
"The picture blurs the border between reality and fantasy and tells the story of an alienated youngster who believes he can connect with a woman in another apartment block by using a TV remote control"