Hi guest, Register | Login | Contact Us
Welcome to Phayul.com - Our News Your Views
Thu 28, Jul 2016 12:08 PM (IST)
Search:     powered by Google
2016 ELECTION RESULT
 MENU
Home
News
Photo News
Opinions
Statements &
Press Releases

Book Reviews
Movie Reviews
Interviews
Travels
Health
Obituaries
News Discussions
News Archives
Download photos from Tibet
 Latest Stories
News of Tibetan's arrest due to We-Chat group last year emerges
Tibetan who faced second imprisnment released in poor health
Retired General sentenced to life on graft charges in China
Dalai Lama to take two week’s rest before teachings in Leh
China threatens India of “serious consequences” over explusion of its journalists
Monk released after completing sentence in Zoege
3 Xinhua journalists asked to leave India after intelligence red flag
Former Miss Tibet Tsering Chungtak passes away
In conversation with the reel Dalai Lama, Tenzin Dalha
Human Rights Watch says tolerance against peaceful protest in Tibet diminishing
 Latest Photo News
His Holiness the Dalai Lama being greeted by on his arrival at Kushok Bakula Rinpoche Airport in Leh, Ladakh, J&K, India, July 25, 2017. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL
Ven. Thupten Ngodup, the medium of State Oracle Nechung participates in the official ceremony of the Trelo Tsechu (Guru Padmasambhava's birth anniversary) conducted by the Nechung Drayang Ling monastery, Dharamsala. July 18, 2016, Phayul Photo/Geleck Palsang
President Barack Obama greets His Holiness the Dalai Lama at the entrance of the Map Room of the White House on June 15, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
more photos »
Advertisement
The Sun Behind the Clouds -- Film Review
hollywoodreporter.com[Friday, January 15, 2010 17:05]
By Sheri Linden

PALM SPRINGS -- The subtitle of new film "The Sun Behind the Clouds" -- "Tibet's Struggle for Freedom" -- refers not only to the half-century dispute between Tibet and China but also to the divisions that have arisen among Tibetans around their beloved leader. The film is essential viewing for anyone who cares about the fate of the mountain region and the legacy of the Dalai Lama.

The documentary's North American premiere at the Palm Springs International Film Festival received a bit of a publicity boost after Chinese film authorities requested its screenings be canceled and, in protest of the fest's refusal to do so, withdrew two Chinese movies from the lineup. But regardless of attempted power plays against it, the film is notable for its focus on an extraordinary year in Tibet's history and on Tibetans themselves -- historians, writers, activists, all eloquent, impassioned and living in exile. Chief among those exiles is the 14th Dalai Lama, 74-year-old Tenzin Gyatso, who granted the filmmakers considerable access. He's seen in prayer, in new interviews and in his world travels as ambassador of peace.

Co-directors Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam have been making films about Tibet for 20 years. The latter, who also narrates "Clouds," is himself a first-generation exile, born in 1959, the year of the failed uprising against the occupying Chinese and the beginning of the Dalai Lama's India-based government-in-exile. In 2008, the filmmaking pair hurried to catch up with a number of dramatic events: worldwide protests centering on China's vaunted "coming-out party" to the world as host of the Olympics and, more significant, the biggest uprisings in Tibet since 1959.

The doc's talking heads make clear that the Dalai Lama's position as a spiritual leader who also is a political figure creates a profound dilemma for him and his people. They're incompatible roles, some argue, and the leader himself indicates he wouldn't disagree with that assessment. Discussing his Middle Way -- the compromise policy he adopted in the late 1980s that forsakes the fight for political independence while insisting on meaningful cultural autonomy -- his eyes betray a deep sorrow. Not only does his proposal continue to be rebuffed and misrepresented by the Chinese government, but it has done nothing to lessen his people's pain.

In the urgent context of the battle to save an endangered way of life from what one commentator calls China's "imperialist cultural invasion," the effectiveness of the Dalai Lama's high-profile visits with world leaders is debatable. The film shows him laughing with Prince Charles, addressing the German parliament, speaking with Chinese journalists in Seattle. However potent he is as a symbol, many activists interviewed for the film believe he could put that symbolism to better use. Some would have preferred, for example, that he had joined the 2008 march to Tibet through India, a months-long protest against China that the filmmakers track quite affectingly.

As with any protracted struggle for human rights, the tension between ideals and political reality is not easily resolved. There's an undeniable pragmatism to the Tibetan leader's approach; China, he says, can provide the economic development Tibet so desperately needs. But those who remain committed to independence, particularly younger Tibetans, see his notion of global interdependence, however essential to Buddhist philosophy, as out of touch.

The well-crafted film benefits from the understated lament of Oscar winner Gustavo Santaolalla's score. But the main melody here is the voices of the Tibetan people. Whether the Dalai Lama will leave them in a better position remains unclear. But when Chinese authorities are still trying to silence filmmakers, there's no doubting his wisdom when he notes that China is "powerful but lacking in self-confidence."

The views expressed in this piece are that of the author and the publication of the piece on this website does not necessarily reflect their endorsement by the website.
Print Send Bookmark and Share
  Readers' Comments »
Be the first to comment on this article

 More..
“The One Who Escaped” : Review of Pema Tseden's ‘Tharlo’
RESURRECTING A LOST HOMELAND - by J. Norbu
WHEN HARI GOT MARRIED- A film review
A Girl from China
-DECODING ‘DRAPCHI’- by Tenzin Tsundue
ARBITRAGE- A film review by Tashi Wangchuk
DRAPCHI - Exclusive Review by Utpal Borpujari
“Kyema” - A FILM REVIEW
Under the Grey Veil - The Sun-Beaten Path
OLD DOG (Khyi rgan)
Advertisement
Community Hall Project Coordinator - Tibetan Community of New York & New Jersey
Advertisement
Photo Galleries
Advertisement
Tibet Fest 7
Phayul.com does not endorse the advertisements placed on the site. It does not have any control over the google ads. Please send the URL of the ads if found objectionable to editor@phayul.com
Copyright © 2004-2016 Phayul.com   feedback | advertise | contact us
Powered by Lateng Online
Advertisement