A Pair of Sri Lankan Classics

  • March 10, 2023 | 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM | Friday
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On 4 February 1948, Sri Lanka gained independence from British rule. In commemoration of the country’s 75th Independence Day, the Asian Film Archive, in collaboration with the High Commission of Sri Lanka in Singapore, presents a pair of restored Sri Lankan classics.

Step into the world of Sinhala cinema with Bambaru Avith (The Wasps Are Here, 1978), a pointed commentary on class tensions in a small fishing town left behind by the forces of modernisation. Directed by filmmaker and academic Dharmasena Pathiraja, who has been dubbed the enfant terrible of Sinhala cinema for his political vision, Bambaru Avith unfolds a complex portrait of clashing social values with consummate style. 

Next in the programme is Lester James Peries’ Nidhanaya (The Treasure), a brooding classic released in 1972—coincidentally, the same year that Ceylon became the Republic of Sri Lanka. Like Bambaru Avith, Nidhanaya casts a keen eye on a society on the cusp of change. Set in the time of the British Raj, the film delves into the twisted psyche of an eccentric aristocrat who will stop at nothing to preserve his family home, uncovering the ruins of a disintegrating social order. Nidhanaya is widely regarded as Peries’ masterpiece; the acclaimed director is credited for breaking away from the dominance of melodramatic stage conventions. 

Together, the two films sketch out different trajectories in Sri Lankan cinema in the 1970s, turning our focus to both the elites of society and the working class, while showcasing the distinctive stylistics of a growing national cinema. 

Tickets are on sale now. Please scroll to the bottom of the page to select the film screening of your choice.  

Oldham Theatre’s opening hours

Friends of AFA members may select the “Friends of AFA” option and enter your membership number if you wish to redeem your remaining complimentary tickets.

For further assistance, please contact us at ticketing@asianfilmarchive.org 

Important Notice:
Do note that Oldham Theatre operates on a free seating arrangement. Doors will open 20 minutes before showtime so arrive early to choose a seat and avoid disrupting the screenings as AFA does not play ads and screenings will start promptly.
All patrons are encouraged to purchase your tickets online. If you choose to purchase tickets or merchandise at Oldham Theatre’s box office, cashless payment is preferred.
Measures will be taken to ensure the health and safety of all patrons at Oldham Theatre. Mask-wearing is optional as of 29 August 2022.

Concession tickets apply to Students (Local & Overseas), Full-time National Servicemen (NSF), Senior Citizens (55 years and above) only.
Please check film ratings before purchase of tickets. Please note that you may be asked to present your ID at the door (this applies to concession tickets as well). Only physical photographic identification is allowed, digital copies of identification are not allowed. AFA reserves the right to turn away any members of the public without physical photographic identification.
Upon confirmation of your order for Tickets, no exchange of Tickets will be made under any circumstances and Tickets are not transferable. No refund on Tickets will be made under any circumstances except due to cancellation of the event. The resale of Tickets at any price is prohibited.