Lama Norbu comes to Seattle in search of the reincarnation of his dead teacher, Lama Dorje. His search leads him to young Jesse Conrad, Raju, a waif from Kathmandu, and an upper class Indian girl. Together, they journey to Bhutan where the three children must undergo a test to prove which is the true reincarnation. Interspersed with this, is the story of Siddharta, later known as the Buddha. It traces his spiritual journey from ignorance to true enlightenment.Written by
Samantha Santa Maria <TE7441667@ntuvax.ntu.ac.sg>
In January 1996, three years after this movie was released, a four-year-old boy from Seattle actually was chosen as the reincarnation of beloved Lama Deschund Rinpochet, and relocated to Nepal, to be groomed as a spiritual teacher. See more »
Early in the movie, when Kenpo and the 3 other Tibetan monks are driving north on the top level of WA-99 the movie cuts to a separate shot of the same group now traveling north on Interstate-5 and then again south on the lower level of the WA-99 viaduct. However, as the scene continues, the group ends up atop the Queen Anne neighborhood, which is a northern part of Seattle. See more »
Once upon a time, in a village in ancient India, there was a little goat and a priest. The priest wanted to sacrifice the goat to the gods. He raised him arm to cut the goat's throat, when suddenly the goat began to laugh. The priest stopped, amazed, and asked the goat, "why do you laugh? Don't you know I'm about to cut your throat?" "Oh yes," said the goat. "After 499 times dying and being reborn as a goat, I will be reborn as a human being." Then the little goat began to cry. The...
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At the very end of the credits, there is a shot of a hand wiping away the sand of the mandala. (Mandalas are brushed away at some point after completion to symbolize Impermanence, one of the tenets of Buddhism). See more »
There can be no doubt that Bertolucci made a beautiful and very stylistic portrayal of Siddartha (yes, Keanu does and looks very well in this part). There can be doubt though if these mystical and captivating scenes that play in the ancient (not necessarily historical!) India and the Far Orient are succesfully intermingled with the present day search for a reincarnated soul. I have seen the film several times and I am still not sure. Would this film have been better if it had only focused on the life and times of Siddartha / Buddha? Or would this just have made the film look "easier"? Present and past, reality and legend, magical scenery and modern city life continuously interchange. Each time the film shifted from Siddartha's "world" to Seattle I felt a little sorry. I wanted more and more of these silent, magic world. Bertolucci keeps us awake by going the other way. The things Siddartha learned can be applied, by us, the viewers, in what happens next. Let's just say Bertolucci's choice for dialectic film making was the right one. Final remark: the video / DVD cover is absolutely ridiculous. Surely the film company also wanted to attract young female Keanu fans by portraying him in a slightly romantic, counteropposing posture to Bridget Fonda. The two never meet in the film at all!
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