Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Tibetan Warrior (2015)

Musician Loten Namling spent the first 25 years of his life in India. He has spent the second 25 years in Switzerland. He was deeply disturbed by the turn of events which had young tibet men and women setting themselves as a desperate means of drawing attention to the Chinese occupation of Tibet. Not feeling he is strong enough to set himself on fire Namling instead drags a coffin across  Switzerland in the hope of drawing attention to the Free Tibet cause. When that fails to get the proper change and the Swiss government signs a trade treaty with China he heads to India and eventually meets with the Dali Lama.

This is a good low key look at the Tibetan cause and one man fighting to bring change. The problem with the film is that the film is perhaps a little too low key. While it very nicely tells us the story of Namling, his fight and the cause, it doesn't really light the necessary fire under it's audience's ass. Its not the sort of film that is going to make people join the fight. For me the the film was a nice bit of information but I wasn't really moved deeper into the cause. I saw the film and when it was done I was on to the next thing.

Despite the fact it doesn't get one to take up arms, either figuratively or literally the film still is worth seeing for a couple of reasons, first the film nicely lays out the Free Tibet cause. Secondly and more interesting the film beautifully documents the arc of Namling's quest. We watch how his feelings morph and change from a need to do something at first non-violently to pondering if perhaps a bomb might change thing and finally back again as the Dali Lama puts something into perspective for him.
For me the arc of a how someone things is always interesting and I found that the best part of this film.

If you are interested in Tibet, or Buddhism (the film is steeped in Buddhist ideas) do give the film a shot.

The international premiere is Thursday at Landmark Sunshine Cinema in New York. For tickets and information go here. The film will be released on home video the next day.

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