Monday, April 15, 2024

KAMAY (2024) Vision Du Réel


Kamay is the name of a stubborn grass that grows in the middle of Afghanistan.  It is a symbol for the people who live there who refuse to give up and bow to authorities. It is a representation of the family of a girl named Zahra who killed herself after a run in with a teacher who was the dean of her school.

KAMAY the film is the story of Zahra’s family, who a year after her death are trying to not only get justice for her daughter but just get her possessions back from the authorities on Kabul.

This is a pastoral film that moves at the speed of life. It is a film where we watch the family as they work around their home, just trying to live their lives, while at the same time trying to connect with the people working for justice in Kabul. We also follow the family as they make the days long car ride trips into the city, through the mountains, the snow, and assorted other dangers.

KAMAY is a very moving film. It is a film perfectly designed to make us feel what the people on the screen are feeling. A brilliant use of pacing and minimal camera movement we feel as though we are moving through life with the family.  We feel the weight of their lives in ways that most films don’t give us. I was touched.

That said the pace of the film is very slow.  As I said it moves at the speed of life. If you either don’t like that or can’t click with it this is going to be a tough slog. I think what we see and what we experience is worth the trip, but that may not work for you.

Ultimately KAMAY is magnificent film that you should see, especially if you can see it on the big screen where you can fall into the images.


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