Filmed during nine journeys throughout Tibet, India and Nepal, this film brings audiences to the long-forbidden "rooftop of the world"... from rarely-seen rituals in remote monasteries, to horse races with Khamba warriors; from brothels and slums in the holy city of Lhasa, to magnificent Himalayan peaks still traveled by nomadic yak caravans. The dark secrets of Tibet's recent past are chronicled through personal stories and interviews, and a collection of undercover and archival images. TIBET: CRY OF THE SNOW LION is an epic story of courage and compassion. Written by
One reviewer from Canada points out the "spiritual bias" in this documentary but that should surprise no one. True, the platform of the film is pro-Dalai Lama and anti-PRC in perspective but I did not share the impression that pre-invasion Tibet was ever portrayed as a paradise. The fact is, in spite of the silly protestations of another reviewer who, in badly written English, chimes that no government has recognized Tibet, which smacks of a sneaky PRC propaganda insertion. But, let's not lose sight of the film while we're sounding our favorite political war drum. If you want serious ethnography, read Mel Goldstein's books and if you want a snapshot view of the plight of Tibet and the netherworld into which Tibetan ex-pats have been shoved, this is the one. Maybe I'm getting senile but I labored under no impression that this documentation of the Chinese invasion and occupation of a region wherein lived people of a distinctive language and culture would be wholly objective or dispassionate in scope. My treat was seeing some marvelous footage of some of the most barren places on the planet and some pictures of what has been going on. Like any other viewer, I did not enjoy the graphic depiction of abuse and torture but, in my view, it needed to be shown.
As one who loves to read the reviews as much as seeing the film, I must observe that most were impressed by what they saw. One could go on and on about the politics of it all, but from the standpoint of art, I think this little film was a winner. See it for yourself and decide.
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