A young girl zealously wants to go to school and learn to read and write. Almost everywhere she is met with hostility or indifference. The only young boy who takes her to his school is ...
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A young girl zealously wants to go to school and learn to read and write. Almost everywhere she is met with hostility or indifference. The only young boy who takes her to his school is thrown out by the teacher, because helping her prevented him from coming in time. - It must not go unnoticed that the schoolgirls and the female teacher are likewise hostile toward this girl. None of them want her in the classroom. On her way home she and other girls are taken as prisoners by boys playing talibans. They tear her school book to pieces (or rather what was left of it after the schoolgirls had done the same thing.) The "taliban boys" threaten to stone their girl prisoners (although in this movie there is little real physical violence against girls). The girl's attempts end in complete failure. (Whatever moods of the scenes throughout the entire movie, the acting by the central girl is really impressive.) Written by
Max Scharnberg, Stockholm, Sweden
In a similar approach to Begnini's 'Life is beautiful', or John Boyne's 'The Boy in the Stripped Pijamas' (now becoming a film), the director shows our own ugliness as seen through the innocent and clever eyes of kids. The whole story happens in their world, and we only see adults from waist down, as seen by kids, although the reflection of the evil they cause affects children in a shameful way, as the title suggests. It is a very sad story not only because,as always, the innocent have to pay for the crimes of the powerful, but also because in their eyes, the politics of power, domination and war is bare, without excuses, in all its monstrosity. Although the story is set in Afghanistan, a country that has been suffering all kind of conflicts, these are problems happening all around the world, because very few are the areas which have not inflicted and suffered, in some time of their history the abuses of power the film points to: racism (pashtun attacking hazara kids, considered inferior), sexism (segregated schools, girl insulted and attacked for being 'a woman'), fundamentalism (kids playing the taliban torturing and mock killing hazaras and/or girls), international abusive and interested invasions (kids playing the American spy, and the American soldiers attacking and bombing other kids)and poverty suffered mainly by children, living in caves and with no access to school, having to take care of small brothers as their mothers have to works, fathers being nowhere.
The girl protagonist is wonderful, and the photography of the film very beautiful. A simple, funny, entertaining and beautiful story which, mirrors our evil through the innocent and beautiful eyes of a kid.
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