In the late 1980s, 15-year-old street kid Qodrat is arrested for illegally reselling cinema tickets, and put in an orphanage on the outskirts of Kabul. For the first time in his life, he goes to school, takes a class trip, makes friends, and falls in love—while avoiding two older bullies.
After her hypnotic debut Wolf and Sheep, Shahrbanoo Sadat returned to Cannes with an ode to Indian cinema set at a historical moment for Afghanistan. While keeping her ethnographic approach, Sadat developed a story full of humor and sweetness supported by the performance of Qodratollah Qadiri.
What an interesting film ..wasn’t sure about the dream sequences initially but they really added that mad touch that was in keeping with the mood..thought the child actors and the lead male were a real breath of fresh air and a real antidote to the all singing all smiling nonsense we see from Hollywood .
Dreamy injection of Bollywood cinematography in a playful, yet not-so-carefree world of orphaned boys in 1989 Kabul. Sadat`s unique portrayal of real-life social & political issues in the unconventional lens of young, adolescent life in an orphanage is captivating.
effortless. a profoundly touching film about political changes and growing up, blended with very comedic bollywood-like scenes that provide sometimes much needed relief from the gritty reality of 1980s afghanistan. the director's young age makes this even more commendable.
Truly meaningful story, it is a very realistic portrait of a very complex historical moment for Afghanistan, and the twist of it is perfectly embodied in the figure of the children, the solidarity between them, their dreams, their challenges, and their hopes. A movie that should be showed in any school where teenagers can still see how important it is their learning journey for shaping their future.
It was certainly alluring to see a film from Afghanistan taking place in late 80's period. Islamist, Russian and Bollywood influence converge in a specific era in a peculiar geography with memorable elements: children playing with bullets, killing themselves, surviving their lives as orphans. However, the film is more of random scenes from a memoir, and doesn’t add up to anything coherent in the end. Abrupt ending.
This is liberatory cinema at its best. The quietly thoughtful camera work allows us to understand the truth of these orphaned boys lives. A film of simple, poetic pathos that manages its mostly young cast with a sensitive humanity. It shifts from the oneiric to the realist in inventive ways that encourages a sympathetic relation between the viewer and the viewed. Great cinema, simple complexity.
A beautifully-told coming-of-age story concerning an orphanage in communist-era Afghanistan, the innocence of youth comes to a sudden end with the Islamic takeover of the country. While it's a good coming-of-age story, the historical background and the splendid use of Indian music to express feeling (as if to tell us how foreign both Communism and fundamental Islam was to Afghans) make this a great film...