UK / Nepal 2016
Tom Cullingham, Ashok Yadav, Sampada Malla (executive), Bobby Pin (executive), Ian McDicken (executive) for Javiya Films, 360 Degree Mountain Films
directed by Veemsen Lama
starring Shyam Khadka, Sangita Tamang, Babita Tamang, Kaushal Pandit
story by Veemsen Lama, screenplay by Sampada Malla, music by Ben Winwood
Please note: This review is based on a pre-release press screener, the
movie's still a work in progress as of this writing.
Ram (Shyam Khadka) returns home to his wife and daughter after three
years to celebrate the festival of Dashain, and only in secret, being a
guerrilla fighter in the Maoist revolution in Nepal. But what should have
been a happy reunion with his wife (Babita Tamang) and his daughter Sani
(Sangita Tamang) turns into something much more depressing, since Ram has
to find out his family lives in absolute poverty, to a degree that his
wife can hardly afford decent food anymore, let alone pay for her daughter
going to school. The only possession the family still has is their goat
Chyanti, so Ram decides to sell her to provide the family with the bare
necessities - which sounds like the sensible thing to do, objectively, but
Sani has really grown fond of the goat, and vice versa, so the whole way
to the market, Ram has no idea how to break the news that Chyanti is to be
sold (and subsequently slaughtered) to his daughter ...
is quite simply a touching little film ... but not in the cheesy,
tearjerking way (even if the story alone suggests as much), but in a way
that makes you think, which is helped by a straight-forward yet
clichée-free and clever script, a subtle directorial effort that still
makes perfect use of its breath-taking locations, and very natural
performances by all involved.
Well worth a look indeed!