IMDb > The Boy Who Plays on the Buddhas of Bamiyan (2004)

The Boy Who Plays on the Buddhas of Bamiyan (2004) More at IMDbPro »

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The Boy Who Plays on the Buddhas of Bamiyan -- Filmed over the course of a year, this film follows the story of one nine-year-old boy, and his friends and neighbours, all of whom live in the caves beside the destroyed Buddhas of Bamiyan.

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7.5/10   144 votes »
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Tagline:
Their battleground is his playground
Plot:
In 2001, the Taliban government of Afghanistan destroyed the Buddhas of Bamiyan, the world's tallest stone sculptures... See more » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
5 wins See more »
NewsDesk:
(4 articles)
User Reviews:
What this film needs is more information, and less empathy from the filmmakers See more (9 total) »

Directed by
Phil Grabsky 
 
Produced by
Amanda Wilkie .... producer
 
Original Music by
Dimitri Tchamouroff 
 
Cinematography by
Phil Grabsky 
 
Film Editing by
Phil Reynolds 
 
Editorial Department
Peter Lynch .... colorist
 

Distributors
  • NHK (2004) (Japan) (TV)

Additional Details

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Runtime:
USA:96 min
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Movie Connections:
Featured in Taxi to the Dark Side (2007)See more »

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2 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
What this film needs is more information, and less empathy from the filmmakers, 14 March 2006
Author: Colette Corr from Melbourne, Australia

This documentary has been highly rated in Australia and overseas, winning several awards, including the Grand Jury Prize at the Washington DC Independent Film Festival.

The Boy Who Plays on the Buddhas of Bamiyan follows a year in the life of eight-year old Mir, who lives in the ruins of what was formerly Afghanistan's foremost tourist attraction. In 2001, the Taliban dynamited the 1600-year old Buddha statues, condemning them as idolatrous.

Although Mir's family and neighbours are so poor they literally eat grass, Mir's cheerfulness is a vivid demonstration of human tenacity. The community that surrounds him are also very candid in their interviews.

Filmmaker Phil Grabsky has avoided voice-over to concentrate on the human aspect of the story, letting the Bamiyan community speak for itself, with occasional BBC news reports playing over the scenery. The soundtrack, by Dimitri Tchamouroff and Dawood Sarkhosh is very emotive and, although beautiful, illustrates one of the flaws of this film.

The Boy Who Played on the Buddhas of Bamiyan is sentimental, sometimes overstated and also very slow. Although the plight of Mir, his family and neighbours is compelling, a more conventional approach to documentary-making, including voice-over and expert interviews, would give us more insight into the situation and speed up the pace.

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