The Betrayal (Nerakhoon) by Ellen Kuras

Written and directed by Ellen Kuras and Thavisouk Phrasavath, The Betrayal (Nerakhoon) follows a family of Lao immigrants in New York struggling to rebuild their lives after being forced to leave their native country. (Phrasavath’s father had collaborated with the CIA, choosing targets for U.S. bombings.)

Reviews have been highly positive. The New York TimesA. O. Scott called The Betrayal “contemplative and impressionistic,” while Newsweek’s David Ansen proclaimed it a “moving, lyrical … epic.”

The Betrayal has been nominated for the 2009 Spirit Awards and is one of the 15 semi-finalist documentaries in the running for the 2009 Academy Awards.

The Betrayal opens at Laemmle’s Music Hall in Beverly Hills on Jan. 16.

Official Site.