|The Third Wife is about the struggle of 14-year-old May who enters into an arranged marriage with a much older man in late 19th-century rural Vietnam. (Photo: tiff.net)
The Best ASEAN Film went to the host’s “Manta Ray” by Phuttiphong Aroonpheng, while “Balangiga: Howling Wilderness” by Khavn De La Cruz from the Philippines grabbed the Jury Prize.
Along with the three main prizes, the Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to director Garin Nugroho of Indonesia.
This year’s festival, organised by the Thai Ministry of Culture, attracted the participation of 10 films from seven ASEAN member states.
The Third Wife, directed by Nguyen Phuong Anh (Ash Mayfair), tells a story in the 19th century rural Vietnam, in which a 14-year-old girl becomes the third wife of a wealthy landowner. After the marriage, she has to struggle with family politics, her own agency, and the prospect of motherhood.
It has won numerous international prizes, such as Best Artistic Contribution in International Competition awards at the 40th Cairo International Film Festival, RTVE - Another Look Award at the 66th San Sebastian International Film Festival, NETPAC (Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema) award at the Toronto International Film Festival 2018.