Greetings from Saigon

Been away from Danish December weather and xmas for a long time! 30degrees here in wild Saigon where everyone seems to have a motorbike or to ride on one with the girl- or boyfriend. A lot of energy, but where is it going, Ho Chi Minh, would you like to know, you the official role model of a country that experiences an enormous economic growth right now including consumerism, tourism (yes, we benefit) and total Western life style, at least here in the center, where we feel at home at Hotel Continental – Graham Greenes place, you know, where “The Quiet American” is said to have been written. The book that is sold just around the corner in a cheap photocopied version by one of the street sellers!

I had the idea to write a bit about hotel room zapping for documentaries but has actually nothing to report, other than the Vietnamese official channels seem to broadcast documentary films from the war time every single evening – I can see the pictures but dont understand what is being said. The rest is CNN small reality clips, Discovery and Nat Geo and all that s…

What is much more easy to understand is the War Crime Museum that we visited. A documentation in photos mostly, magnificent photos taken by courageous photographers who risked and for many lost their lives in giving a documentation about what was going on when the Americans were here. It is unbelievable what is to be seen from My Lai, from victims of Agent Orange, from consequences of bombing Hanoi and Haiphong in xmas 1972… a bit more than 30 years ago. Nothing new but good to be reminded about what happened politically when you were young.

Today its Iraq.

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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