The Cup (1999) Poster

(1999)

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Interesting, funny and moving
Nikos-1224 May 2000
In the 1950s, the Chinese invaded Tibet, killing one fifth of the six million inhabitants and destroying over 10,000 Buddhist monasteries. Today, Buddhism is strictly forbidden in Tibet and even owning a picture of the Dalai Lama is a crime. Consequently, many families send their children to monasteries-in-exile in India and Bhutan in order to receive a traditional Buddhist education. The Cup is set in such a monastery, at the time of last World Cup.

Orgyen (Jamyang Lodro) is a young monk who is obsessed with football. When he isn't pretending to be Ronaldo or discussing the World Cup in the middle of prayer, he is planning to see the next game in the local village without getting caught by Geko (Orgyen Tobgyal, Jamyang Lodro's father in real life), the father-figure disciplinarian of the monastery. With his friend Lodo (Neten Chokling), he quickly persuades new arrival Palden (Kunsang Nyima) to join them, while Geko and the Abbot (Lama Chonjor, real-life Abbot of Chokling Monastery, where The Cup was filmed) try to maintain discipline and fathom the rules of the game.

Directed by Khyentse Norbu, a first time feature director and important Buddhist figure himself, The Cup features an all-monk cast, none of whom had any acting experience prior to filming. Essentially a documentary about monastic life, The Cup nevertheless shows the realities of the Tibetans' political situation and combines serious issues with a more light-hearted style. It is genuinely witty in places and with great performances from Jamyang Lodro and Orgyen Tobgyal, always a pleasure to watch. The foothills of the Himalayas are beautifully photographed and the score is appropriately inobtrusive. On what is usually described as a 'shoestring budget' ('sandal-strap' might be more appropriate) Khyentse Norbu has created a lovely little film that deserves all the success it can get.
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10/10
Soccer and Spirituality
John Foster29 May 2005
This film is an authentic look at the situation that many young Tibetan men and boys find themselves in following the Chinese occupation of Tibet. But the film doesn't dwell on Tibetan politics, it is a light-hearted and elegantly-simple film inspired by true events at a Tibetan monastery-in-exile in Bhutan, where young Buddhist monks develop an interest in the World Cup soccer final.

The Abbot of the monastery and the older Lamas just have no idea what soccer is, and there is a humorous scene where the old Lama is sleeping in the sun and the young monk Orgyen comes up to him:

Orgyen: "Do a prediction for us Lama"; Old Lama: "Can't you see I'm busy!"; Orgyen: "At least say prayers for France"; Old Lama: "Are they sick?!!?"

And when everyone has seen the World Cup final, the serious Buddhist message comes home, in a beautiful way...

"If a problem can be solved, why be unhappy? And if it cannot, what is the use of being unhappy?"

'The Cup' contrasts strongly with earlier big-budget, stylised, productions about Tibetan Buddhism such as 'Seven Years in Tibet' and 'Kundun'. It is in the same vein as 'Samsara', which is also a very good film.

PS Director Khyentse Norbu (who is said to be a re-incarnate Lama) also has a new movie out -- 'Travellers and Magicians' (2003).
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8/10
simple great..
Ivna23 May 2005
i just finished watching this show on DVD. Generally a simple story with predictable plot. I always thought this movie is about some young monks trying hard to play football in their secular life. But, it turned out to be a world cup which changed the lives of these monks. More importantly, the show allows the public to see the hidden side of these monks. They can be playful and lazy. They are even capable of playing pranks and cracking good jokes. Orgyen is certainly a notable character in the show. A strong personality who display no religious qualities in the earlier parts of the film. i like him more and more as the show progressed. The film ties strongly to Buddhist teachings and gives you a new perspective to life and Buddhism. Expect to be exposed to some Tibetan culture and football.
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worth watching again
macbethp30 July 2003
I first saw this movie in a theater several years ago, not knowing what to expect. I remember that the children's singing at the beginning of the movie sounded a little harsh (unlike anything I'd heard before) but, by the end, the same singing enchanted me, I heard its sweetness, and I left knowing I had to see the movie again to take it all in. Since then I've bought the movie and I'm delighted that my young soccer-loving nieces and nephews (from different countries) love the movie as well, and want to see it whenever they visit--a tiny little contribution towards cross-cultural awareness. Great movie for kids and adults.
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8/10
This film "covered my feet in leather"
sweetty092430 January 2002
This is a delightful little film, and freshman effort from the little country of Bhutan. Had it not been based on true events, I would have found it hard to believe. Not claiming to know much about the life of a Bhuddist Monk, I didn't think they allowed themselves to be interested in more than chanting and karmic evolvement. This film acts as a great "equalizer", confirming my beliefs that we all are the same. We just tend to say it differently. The young monk who is the protaganist of this film reminds me so much of many young men I know. With his pushy, overbearing and sometimes irreverent behavior, you see a side of monkhood that is so often hidden in films. They are not perfect and they are prone to the same foibles we all have. Mainly, DESIRE. And desire no matter how innocent, or deviant, will get you everytime. The landscape appeared to be beautiful, the misty Himalayas, the rolling fields and saffron robes blowing in the wind beneath matching parasols. Unfortunately the cinematographer did not capitalize on all of this natural beauty, but merely glanced at the splendor as if it were merely coincidental. So all we get are mere glimpses at what should have been scenes lovingly caressed by the lens. This was a situation where the landscape and the camera should have clearly become lovers. But beyond that, I was swept away at the innocence of the director and it was a refreshing change to my jaded eyes. In my opinion, the more contrived Hollywood machine would not have been able to do more justice to this simple forthright piece of storytelling. And I am personally pushing for them to see the next World Cup games in person. Wanna take up a collection?
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8/10
Buddhism is their philosophy. Soccer is their religion.
Jessica Carvalho8 February 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I like ''Phörpa'' for many reasons. One of them, is to see some of the Tibetan's culture,that I always found one of the most beautiful and interesting cultures from the East. Other, was the plot, because all the movies I already watched with Tibetan themes was to show Dalai Lama's life or Tibet's situation,what means that they were all serious movies with serious themes. I like serious plots and themes, but 'Phörpa' is very remarkable because it shows a funny side of the young monks and their disciplined life. The story passes during the World Cup, and the character Orgyen is very funny and full of life,removing the myth that the young monks who live in the monastery needs to have passive personality. We see that all the young monks are humans as we are, and they also like soccer!:) I liked a lot and I deeply recommend it!
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8/10
Pure enjoyable fun
smakawhat7 June 2000
Being that two of my many passions in life are soccer and movies I was very interested in seeing this film.

Needless to say, I really enjoyed it. Sometimes a little slow but more than makes up for it. Besides having some VERY funny moments and wonderful characters (that kid was just a scream) the movie really de-mystefies the budhist monks that Westerners seem to sterotype as extremely devoted and mystical.

In reality they are just like us. They have their passions, and joke about everything just like everyone else. They are shown in this film for what the truly are, 'human'. Sure the movie shows the practices which is interesting to see, but it then shows scenes of the devotees, talking about girls, fascinated by the outside world (soccer), not practing their studies, being lazy, and acting just like everyday people.

Great fun film.

Rating 8 out of 10

PS - Yes I'd try my darndest too to not miss the World Cup final.
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5/10
TURNING BUDDHIST
kevin c25 September 2001
Similar to "Kundun" this film captures the charm and dignity of the oppressed Tibetan monks. It also captures the romance and addiction of football. You watch this film, and remember the ease and comfort with which you and I watched France '98. Many others are not so lucky. They do not deserve our pity, nor does this film seek it. Instead it champions life, and our inner-spirit and resolve. A charming little film.

Free Tibet!
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8/10
Yes, it is a simple story, slowly directed as most of life is in slower pace!
kannanp9 September 2003
Simple story of young monks and few old exiled monks and their lives. Soccer is explained to the Abbot as countries fighting over a ball (Different perspective). America is spoken of favourably. This movie touched me in many ways. I had grown up in places like this, visited places like this all my life, though not Dharmasala.

People can live in peace. Will we ever learn? Presence of the menacing Chinese Dragon is alluded to but no statements are made as to the politics. There is a deep longing, suffering, sadness and acceptance of the inevitable in the old Abbot's character. Contrast that with the enthusiasm, indeed passion for life, in Orgyen. The way of the young Monk! This story is based on true events.

I was really touched by the attachment of the youngest monk to a watch; his mother gave it to him. The watch is the only worldly possession of the youngest monk, it is not even running and he parts with it when his uncle asks for it. Filial! so eastern. As soon as he parts with it he misses it and is pensive about it, not interested in watching the Soccer World Finals. See the impact of that emotion on Orgyen. He loses interest in his most anticipated Soccer World Finals. He wants to do everything he can to recover the pawned watch to its rightful owner. Abbot just signs to Geko who goes out to Orgyen and comforts him. A stroke or two on the young Monk's head. No speeches. I was speechless at that moment.

There is every aspect of every emotion in everyone's lives; including a Monk's. As the movie draws to a close, there are few statements, with subtitles, pay close attention. It is pure, simple and philosophical outlook on life.

Will China ever return Tibet to Tibetans? Tibet is already ethnic cleansed where most men are gone. Women are used by Chinese. So on.....
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One Of The Best Foreign Movies I Have Ever Seen!
Zycho-36 August 2000
Phorpe or The Cup is probably the best foreign film I have ever seen, no kidding. It excels beyond a limit in every area, the acting from the young Budhist children are excellent, while the screenplay is brilliant and original. Phorpe (The Cup) is simply one of the best, most intriguing, and most original films I have seen in a long time.

In short, it is exactly the sort of movie New Zealand should be making. A funny, touching and exquisite picture that should be cherished.

Rating: 9
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9/10
Enemies are endless; so give up hatred!!
somenath15 August 2005
Phorpa is a simple and beautiful movie..it deserves more star than it got. This simple movie does not contain any gimmick, car chasing, fighting, evil spirit, hero-anti hero ( the conventional movie subjects ), but contains feelings expressed by very common people ( who are also political victim and list their country ). Its superb direction, since there was enough reason to show battles between countries, hatred among people and religion..but nothing was shown...in stead , it says: "Give up hatred, since you can't win over all the enemies..enemies are endless"..What a message!!! I hope audience gets the above message since it comes directly from the sufferers who has lost their own country, yet you don't hear much against anything! This carefully drawn story teaches us lot while its objective was not teaching... Its superb, its terrific..gets a 10 out of 10 rating!
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A rare opportunity ot take your kids to a different "sport" movie
kloomnik24 April 2000
Tired of having to take your kids to formula movies from Hollywood? This terrific film is set in a world unfamiliar to most kids, yet they will discover that basic behavior is much the same everywhere. They will enjoy the familiar themes of school pranks, soccer mania, or group effort towards a "cause", but in an environment drastically different from the cliche American suburbia.
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10/10
a humorous and wise film
ajpeustace19 January 2000
Phorpa is an unassuming, warm-hearted film and undermined any expectations I had of it being cutesy or sentimental. It portrays life in a genuine Tibetan Buddhist monastery in very down-to-earth, often comic, terms.

The monks in the film are refreshingly unholy, displaying all-too-human tendencies and interests. None of the cast are trained actors, all being genuine monks, and some of the acting reflects this, but overall I was left with the feeling that I had seen a rare and worthwhile film. The Buddhist take on endings (at the end of the film, of all places) is particularly appropriate. This film (like life), doesn't necessarily reach a logical or dramatic finale, but it does leave one feeling inspired.
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9/10
Art imitates life ... a haunting film
yangchenma22 June 2000
Spare, clean, thoughtful footage with spontaneous, charismatic actors and a simple story -- the best kind. Unfolding slowly, the underlying plot flows along like the layers formed by currents in water. The mind of the director is evident in the consistent way it develops a theme of impermanence, while allowing whatever happens to happen.

If nothing else, see it for the incredible music, a Tuva throat singer whose sustained notes are as dense as a golden sunset. I came away with an impression of green and the heartbeat of the life within all beings. I can hardly wait to see what Rinpoche will produce when he comes out of his next retreat. He is, in my view, a true artist, driven by a need to express his vision.
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6/10
The way is Monk-ey business.
George Parker6 November 2000
"The Cup" is a lighthearted look inside a Buddhist monastery and the lives of some young expatriated Tibetan Monk soccer fans. This simple story is told in a simple way with a serenity not often found in western films. Some will find this film's slow pace tedious while others will appreciate a rare look at an esoteric and cloistered culture.
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8/10
Grainy, but emotional
aisultanzhumabek28 February 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Khyentse Norbu can be accepted as one of the key producers in Buddhist film production, because he was the main assistant and adviser in filming the Little Buddha (1993) of Bernardo Bertolucci. This film has mostly gotten positive reviews from different critics (mine also) due to the genesis of elegant depicting of the Buddhist practices and pithy core idea of enlightenment. In the case of The Cup (1999) - everything is reverse. This film's way of delivering the current problems of practicing the Buddhism in the modern world of "desires and hatred" could be taken as sarcasm. Every-day activities of monks, as breaking the rules only for watching the match or hidden use of magazines of "desire", bring the part of truth with pinch of humor. However, having almost no clear idea from the first view could confuse the broad audience. Only the quote in the last episode of the film: "If problem is solved, why to be unhappy, if problem is not solved, what is the use of being unhappy?", which has minimum connection with the plot, makes the viewer to completely rethink and find their own lesson from the film as every key actor did it in the end. From the first minutes of viewing, everybody, even people with almost no "cinema experience", can observe the limited budget on post-production and overall quality of film. And it irrigates... for several minutes. The professionality of key actor's leads away the attention from this flaw and makes you become the part of this grainy and unprofessionally-filmed story. The story, which was shown with mostly no "powder" - no polished picture with fancy words. And it helps you to express the true emotions towards the refugee boys and surrounding actors. To conclude with, The Cup is the sort of films, which could be taken vaguely due to uncertainty with morality but with certain emotionality. Therefore, there is two reasons to see this film - expressing new level of feelings or getting know with current monks of Buddhism.
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8/10
The Cup
dinaald27 February 2018
Warning: Spoilers
The movie was directed and written by Khyentse Norbu in 1999. The movie tells us about the story based on true events which happened to young boys living in the Indian Buddhist monastery. The movie depicts the ordinary life of the boys who are thought the word of Buddha. At the beginning of the movie, we see two Chinese boys who have just arrived at the monastery in India. Gradually, they are getting used to this life of studying the teachings of Buddha, however it is showed they do sometimes miss their home, their parents. For the most part, life at the monastery appears to be simple with little needs and the way children collaborate with each other is depicted more the same as any ordinary children do. As everyone else, they do have their interests, their feelings, their memories. The character of boys living in the monastery differ to an extent. As the boy called Orgyen, who is very mad with soccer, runs away from the monastery at nights to watch the football match. The simple way of life and the rules of the monastery prohibit any kind of such an activity. As the movie depicts the time of 1998 World Cup, the set of the events in the monastery become much more interesting. The movie in whole, raises the issue of friendship and teaching. The boys, being fans of soccer, ask their teacher to allow them to watch the final match. Interestingly, the relationship between teachers as well is showed very well and very thoughtful. By allowing the boys to watch the final match, the masters are depicted as very kind, humane and good-natured people with the full understanding of unavoidable changes in rules in the time of progress. Hence, form that point, the story appears to raise the question of changing monastery rules under the pressure of modernity, progress and technology. That aspect happened in 1998, today might have much strong implications and influence. Apart from that, the story of the Indian monastery, well depicts the friendship among the boys, their act for help, their concern about each other, the closely-knit actions for the common good. It was seen in the scene of collection the money for the rent of a TV-set, the organized scene of lunching the TV for the right wave. All in all, the movie teaches issues of friendship, right actions, wisdom, kindness. Buddhist lifestyle form that sense, attracts a watcher with the moral virtues raised in the movie. It appears to be nice directed from very calm, kind perspective, becoming exciting to watch. Thus, the atmosphere of the film generates very positive thoughts and leaves a watcher with a good impression.
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8/10
Clear, concise and wise
shagibay25 February 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Movie "The Cup" narrates a story about young monks living in a Buddhist monastery in India, who are obsessed with an upcoming football world cup. The monastery is predominated with young monks rather than adults, and probably many of them were sent there by their parents. Besides large number of young monks, from the film we learn that some of them are even coming from Tibet, therefore it can be deduced that political situation was unstable and that time. However, still it does not seem to bother young monks as during the entire movie their primary goal is to find a way to watch "The Cup". The setting as mentioned before is Buddhist Sangha (Buddhist monastery and community) in 1998, and therefore most of the movie we observe daily monastic life. The movie possesses significant variety of details and nuances of monastic rituals, rules and their lifestyle, and probably it objectively demonstrates life of ordinary modern monks and their disciples within the Sangha. In the movie, we see different formal rituals, initiation process of disciples and the rules of conduct in monastery. The plot is basically focuses particularly on one young monk Lodo, an ordinary boy who is passionate about football. It is crucial that he always tries to watch football matches and does not hesitate to break monastic rules, so from this fact we see that he is eager to do anything to accomplish his desire or "craving". However, by the end he experiences internal conflict as he forced the other young monk to give away his watches which is highly important for him. During the most important match, the final of "The Cup", that Lodo cherished to see, he does not feel any pleasure, as he sees sufferings of his friend who had to sacrifice his watches that his mother gave him. Therefore Lodo decided to return the watches and he is even ready to give away his football boots that he so neatly kept under the bed. The entire situation demonstrates us that Lodo is highly compassionate and not egocentric, which is very important for any Buddhist. If to make a parallel with actual Buddhist doctrines, "craving causes suffering" and Lodo finds his way from sufferings by breaking his craving, in this case it is football cup, and subsequently acquires the true understanding of happiness. There as well a lot of symbolism in this film, for instance, for a three times in a film we may see the poster on the wall of Lodo's room. Initially on the wall were pictures of the Buddhist implication, but Lodo covered them with huge amount of football posters and by the end as he returned the watches to his friend, we again see the wall with only poster of Buddhist implication without any football stickers. Therefore, this wall demonstrates spiritual growth of Lodo, as at first his mind was occupied with craving about football, and by the end he frees his mind. This wall is illustration of some kind of "enlightenment" that Lodo passed through. "The Cup" is a great embodiment of modern monastic life, it objectively represents the attitudes of a people within a Sangha and its organization, but more importantly the movie in a very clever manner appeals to the viewer, at least to me. Even though, the film narrates only a short story and conventional story of a young Buddhist monk, it is still able to convey an important message about compassion.
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8/10
The touching story of little monks
dannatyo25 February 2018
Warning: Spoilers
The film "The Cup", which narrates the touching story of little monks from one Himalayan Monastery with a big love to football, was awarded with a lot of prizes in numerous festivals. What makes this film special is the fact that its director, Khyentse Norbu, is a Tibetan lama himself. So he, more than anyone else, was able to depict the life of Buddhist monks as it is. Probably that is why this story gets to the hearts of viewers, independently of their religion. The most important thing that I liked about this movie is its main idea of representation the religion not only as a collection of strict rules and discipline, but also as a kindness, generosity and pure hearts of believers, which are much more important. Despite the fact that it is prohibited to watch the TV, it is prohibited to escape from the monastery, despite all of the aspects of the strict monastic code, the lama and another teacher support monks in their big interest and passion. Because they understand that they are kids, it is not the ideal world of fully detached from everything disciples, and that these children have a right to find something very interesting for them. More importantly, how united and harmonious the whole sangha is, how honest they are towards their teachers, how kind and generous they are to give the last thing that they have in order to support their fellow monk in his decision of bringing the TV into their monastery - that is what plays a bigger role. Seeing all of this, the wise lama accepts the little deviations from the rules. From my point of view, this highlights the main idea and principles of Buddhism as a very inclusive religion - you have to have a kind and pure heart, you have to be in peace and harmony with yourself and with the external world, your intentions should be good and everything else matters much less. And I think the author not only wanted to speak about the Buddhism precisely, but the message was probably addressed towards all the religions. Because people now misinterpret religions and are so focused on doing everything precisely right according to the laws of religions in order to get rid of their sins, so that they forget to be simply good people and true believers. We need to accept that religion changes through time as people change, but if you have peace and God in yourself, the fact that you watch TV once a week becomes minor. Also I liked how monkhood is represented and shown here. We always imagine monks as people, who are so far away from this Earth, who live a completely different life, eat different food and everything they do is only pray all day. But here we can see that monks are people too. And it is very important to know in order to not idealize any of the religions and ecclesiastic people. Monks also want to make jokes on each other, deviate from some monastery responsibilities, have other interests rather than religion only, want to keep up with the world and it is completely normal for any human being. Another thing that I have found interesting is how Mahayana ideas about Buddhism can be seen here. The whole film is about friendship, support, love, help, rather than about detachment from any relationships and ceasing of all your passions (football, for example), which are in most correspond to the view of Mahayana Buddhists, for whom one of the most important thing is compassion towards each other and the need to help others. In general, I love the genre of this film, and the fact that so deep and profound idea is shown through the innocent comedy. I did not like the camera work because sometimes it was hard to see and understand the scene because of the light and bad perspective. But overall, it is a great film with a good and important message, which I would definitely recommend to people independently of their religious views.
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10/10
Peaceful and serene
raikvaza25 February 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Based on the true events, "The Cup" movie not only manages to deliver certain political messages regarding Sino-Tibetan relations but also creates an atmosphere which literally immerses you into the monastery life of Tibetan Buddhists in exile. After China's invasion of Tibet, the religious practice in the region of the Tibetan Plateau faced numerous struggles. Not only Buddhist monasteries were destroyed, but also Tibetan people faced a strong oppression of their religious beliefs. All of that led oppressed Tibetan monks to migrate to the neighboring India where they could safely practice their religion. During the time period of the movie (1998), almost half a century passed since the onset of the invasion, and most of the younger generation of Tibetan Buddhists haven't even been to Tibet, but they still had a strong sense of enmity towards Chinese government. However, the movie's main focus lies not in delivering certain political messages, but rather in the representation of the daily lives of Tibetan Buddhists.

The whole cast is composed of monks who had no experience in acting at all. However, that played a major role in establishing a connection between the viewer and Tibetan monks, as their acting was sincere and wholehearted. You will feel great empathy for the younger monks, who were desperate in their attempts to watch the World Cup matches. The world of politics doesn't heavily bother their youthful minds, and in terms of behavior and desires, they are no different from any other children of their age. When studying or meditating, they could still get bored and fall asleep, while other young monks would prank sleepers by sewing their robes with the seat. During their spare time, they could go outside to play football with a Coke can or even draw on the walls of the monastery with the piece of chalk. They could disobey the rules and go outside at midnight just to watch yet another soccer match of their favorite team. Some young monks could even find an access to journals with an adult content, which is definitely against the rules of the Buddhist sangha. As a result, the movie manages to show that even under the influence of a strict monastic order, some younger monks can still disobey the rules and that their minds are not only occupied with Buddhist teachings but also with the events happening outside of the walls of their monastery.

To sum up, the whole movie is impregnated with the peacefulness and serenity of the lives of Tibetan Buddhists in the monastery. The overall pace of "The cup" is calming and relaxing, which suits the genre and theme of the movie. Watching how abbots of the Tibetan Buddhist's sangha try to control and at the same time satisfy the curiosity of the minds of the younger generation is very exciting. The way abbots try to adapt to a highly modernized world while also preserving the roots of their teachings is also very intriguing. With a considerably short budget, the director and writer of "The Cup" Khyentse Norbu managed to create a beautiful movie which depicts the lives of Tibetan Buddhists in exile.
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8/10
A wonderful celebration of what is important in life
robertwilson-3487129 July 2017
I'm not going to review the plot here. Others have done that...but this movie is not about Buddhism or football (soccer).

It's about the things that really matter. Family, friendship, connections, faith, history. It's not a perfect film. It's not a film that you easily forget. You simply feel good after this movie.

At the end of it I turned to my wife, who was in tears, and quoted the famous footballer Bill Shankly who said "Football isn't a matter of life or death, it's much more important than that." The Cup shows us how much.
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8/10
Good Things Come To Those Who Wait
wizzardSS3 July 2012
The saying good things come to those who wait is perfectly applicable for a country that to date has only released 15 films - the first of which was this innocent tale of Bhutanese joy.

The Cup (original title - Phörpa) was able to be shot within a village compound and the countryside surrounding it - and it is a great testament to Khyentse Norbu that this doesn't at all hamper the professionalism of the photography. The scenery throughout - including those bits filmed at night - is thoroughly impressive.

Of course, as a film that is basically just about a group of monks there is an element of innocence about The Cup. It does not contain any of the factors that makes Hollywood a reality. There is no violence and no romance outside of the monk's love for the World Cup. Again, it is this simplicity that makes the film very accessible.

There is a lot to learn from this film. Hollywood can see how to create a decent film that has very little happening, and we can all learn how to humbly live our lives by following the example of the mischievous Orgyen.
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10/10
Good Memories! Authentic Buddhist monastery life!
fotograffer14 November 2011
Even though this film was shot in north India and centers around Tibetan exiles who are to this day persecuted by the Chi-Coms, it brought back great memories of a visit to a country monastery in Bhutan, the Chimi Lhakhang, filled with "baby monks." It was on that visit that I witnessed their passion for soccer and their genuine childlike behavior. My comment about this film is that I found it accurately portrayed Buddhist monastery life, especially as the "actors" were all monks themselves. "The Cup" tempts me to make a return visit. Photos of Chimi Lhakhang available at www.fotograffer.com/bhutan/page2.html
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8/10
Very moving
Writer_Mario_Biondi16 August 2011
In its simplicity this is by far the best movie about the REALITY of Buddhist monastic life, very far from the sheer propaganda of "Seven years" and from the mistakes and confusions of "Little Buddha".

This is Bhutanese thinking. The movie has been shot in a real monastery in India, but belonging to the Nyingma sect, and if you have made only a short visit to Bhutan and seen a couple of Nyingma (or even Drukpa Kagyu) monasteries (no Gelugpas, there, no Dalai Lama), or even simply the markets, so similar to the ones where those funny boys go for their errands and their "shopping", you will recognize something very sincere and true.

What is the abbot mostly afraid of for that closed community of only males? Sex. Yes, sex! And those very young monks are boys like all the others in the world.

A beautiful and moving movie, yes!
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