Art & Culture

Tibetan Film Festival at the Alliance Francaise

“This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness,” said His Holiness The Dalai Lama.

The story is of lost souls, of yearning, of time, of home, of hope. The story is of Tibet. Slogans have gone up in unison, so have prayers. The story has been told and witnessed time and again. This time see it through the lens and the eyes of directors from around the world over two days of back to back documentaries and films. The Foundation for Universal Responsibility of His Holiness The Dalai Lama & Alliance Francaise de Bangalore in collaboration with Bangalore Film Society, Charter for Human Responsibilities & Students for A Free Tibet have organized the Tibetan Film Festival 2009 to be held on the 4th and 5th of July at Alliance Francaise.  

The festival opens this Saturday at 11:30 am to Tibetan chanting followed by a series of acclaimed and award winning feature films over the weekend. Despite endless efforts to end it all, the vision simply ceases to be washed away from the memory. The story of the indomitable human spirit comes to the forefront and through the films the history, myths, culture and people of Tibet is portrayed. Swinging between rebellion and affirmation has only strengthened the issue if not anything else.  

The festival starts at around 11 am on both days and the last film is screened at 6:15 pm. There is a discussion with several Tibetan artistes on Sunday morning. Admission to the festival is free.  

The schedule of the festival is as follows:

Saturday 4th July, 2009
11.30am to 12.00pm

Inauguration of Tibetan Film Festival 2009, Bangalore.

Tibetan Chanting.
Inaugural Film

Wheel of Time (83min)    Dir: Werner Herzog

Eccentric and great, rogue director Werner Herzog portrays the Buddhist initiation ceremony of the Kalachakra (wheel of time) and transmutes the words and images into pure ecstasy and blinding light.


The Lost World of Tibet (60min)  Dir: Emma Hindley

An acclaimed co-production by BBC and the British Film Institute, ‘The Lost World of Tibet’ is a fascinating in-depth portrayal of the Tibetan condition through the ages featuring rare archival footage from the early 20th century and commentary from the Dalai Lama.


Dramgyen: The Lute (13min)   Dir: Tashi Eugyalaversion

A short film on yearning, music and the place called Home.

The Cup (93min)   Dir: Khyentse Norbu

A rage at film festival circuits when it premiered, ‘The Cup’ is a beautifully laidback, comedic and heart-warming tale of Orgyen, acolyte monk and rabid soccer enthusiast who tries to bend every rule in the monastery to feast his eyes on the live transmission from Stade de France, Paris as France take on defending champions Brazil.

Kundun(134min)   Dir: Martin Scorsese

The fantastic Mr. Scorsese’s sweeping, operatic take on the turbulent life of the Dalai Lama, an epic tale of a man born into strife and intrigue, the pain of the exile and the quest for piece- ‘Kundun’ is an unforgettable cinematic experience- of landscapes you revisit in dreams.

Sunday 5th July, 2009
Tintin in Tibet (46min)

The intrepid journalist of Le Petit Vingtieme along with a drunk but courageous captain, a mad genius scientist and the ever-faithful dog find themselves in the middle of exciting, enthralling, intriguing, edge-of-the-seat adventures as they venture bravely into the mystical and mysterious land of Tibet where nothing is what it seems.

A discussion with Tibetan artists.

Art in Exile (40min)   Dir: Nidhi Tuli & Ashraf Abbas

In poetry, in art, in the space between the artist and the art and the audience- Tibet survives and persists and resists.


The Tibetans: Life in Exile (63min)   Dir: Robb Bradstock

A document of loss and longing and the exiles struggle to adapt to a new world away from home.



Windhorse(97min)   Dir: Paul Wagner

Oscar winner Paul Wagner directs a gripping political yarn about three young Tibetans and their quest for freedom.


Vajra Sky Over Tibet (89min)   Dir: John Bush

A hypnotic, beautiful documentary filled with unforgettable images and sounds that chronicles a pilgrimage to some of the most holiest of places in occupied Tibet.

Leaving Fear Behind (25min)   Dir: Dhondhup Wangchen

The Beijing Olympics are about to the played out and Tibetans living in Tibet openly voice their opinions on the spirit of the Olympics and the fallout it has had on them.

Closing Film
The Horse Thief (88min)   Dir: Tian Zhuangzhuang

Regarded by no less than Scorsese, Ebert and Rosenbaum as one of the greatest films of all time, ‘The Horse Thief’ is controversial director Zhuangzhuang’s tour-de-force. Stark, sparse, stunning, savage- it is a film like no other. Chronicling the life of a horse thief in Tibet, the movie moves towards nothing less than a revelation.

Alliance Francaise de Bangalore

No. 108, Thimmaiah Road Vasanthnagar
Vasanthanagar, Bangalore -560052 Map

9964533379, 9886213516
Tags: Bangalore, Alliance francaise, thimmiah road, the horse thief, Tibetan film festival

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