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[Video] Filmmaker Captures the 'Phantoms of Saigon'

In his latest short film, Phantoms of Saigon, filmmaker Pham Hong Chuyen juxtaposes poetic, almost alien angles of Saigon with the often faceless community of wandering scrap collectors who roam its streets.

Set to an eerie, rhythmic Bjork tune, the film cuts between fast-paced timelapses of Saigon traffic and slow-motion frames of the city's forgotten rubbish collectors. Throughout the three-minute clip, Phantoms of Saigon highlights the contradictions of modernization in such a city as Saigon.

Accompanied by the following poem from the filmmaker, Phantoms of Saigon captures the lives of certain residents in the southern hub as they struggle to catch up with the city's head-spinning development.


Roaming the streets of Saigon.

Collecting scrap.

Walking, cycling, pushing.

A different pace.


Faceless motobikes. 

Following the currents.

Ignoring, avoiding, rushing.

A street full of phantoms.

[Poem by Pham Hong Chuyen]

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