Thursday, July 29, 2010

Make our films a medium of culture


9 July 2010

I was born and brought up in a simple family, who mostly lived in the south ern part of the country. At the age of five or so, I was exposed to the Indian films, which are popular even today. I remem ber the incidence in Gelephu vividly where I used to sneak into the cinema hall that kept me engaged for several hours. At home, my mother would get sick out of tiring search for me. When Indian films were not known to many Bhutanese, I could pronounce the names of many actors and actresses and I gathered a good vocabulary of Hindi language.

That is how I was groomed and how I became fond of Bollywood and Hollywood films. And by the 1990s, Bhutanese documentaries and films made their way into the Bhutanese movie theatres and started taking shape with strong foundation within a couple of years. Today, Bhutanese films are doing so well in almost all the theatres in the country. We too have some communities outside the country that are genuinely Bhutanese film lovers.

Still, unfortunately, I was not inclined towards Bhuta nese films, and in my memory, I have very few Bhutanese films. The reason behind this was very simple. I judged the Bhutanese films by foreign standards in terms of qual ity. Often, I used to have hot debates with my friends who liked Bhutanese movies. In the end, I used to receive comments such as ‘you poor Bhutanese’, ‘Bhutanese films are unique’ etc.

Today, I am thousands of miles away from my coun try where I am different in so many ways from them, Australians. And homesick, missing family, missing Bhutanese dishes and system became almost part of my life for many weeks. When I was passing through very pain ful moments, only Bhutanese movies, which I got from my friends, give me so much of comfort and keep my tensions at bay. And more than that, in a deeper sense, I could discover the characteristic features of Bhutanese directed films.

I have watched a dozen of Bhutanese films. Indeed, for eign movies are really enter taining and educative in many ways, but they lack a very important substance which I could say is found in the films directed by our Bhutanese directors. Bhutanese mov ies are really unique in their own ways which I have come to realize very recently. How and why? I will leave it for you to find out. For me, happiness is the state of mind that can be achieved through constant practice, and it is independent of materials and surrounding environment that we live in.

Today, we have a very wise philosophy called GNH propounded by the fourth Druk Gyalpo and constantly our policy makers are trying to fit GNH into the system and make it reach every section of the society to achieve balanced growth between economic development and spiritual values.

Australia is a developed country and Australians say 10 years ago, they were happier than they are now. Loss of their happiness is simply due to lack of constant practice to remain happy. They work very hard in exploring new things at the cost of their own culture and identity to become happy.

Bhutan is developing and people are experiencing urban lifestyle. At this juncture, Bhutanese film industry will definitely play a bigger role in making Bhutanese happy because of its uniqueness. Our Bhutanese film directors should explore more Bhuta nese culture, system, feelings and Bhutanese lifestyle for the sake of the societies where culture, tradition and values are fast fading. On the other hand, our government should have faith in the young film industry and should come up with the best policy whereby the film industry could act as a tool to support and propagate GNH principles.

In the communities, school principals, heads of the com munities and parents should provide opportunities to their younger ones to watch Bhutanese films occasionally, which may have lasting posi tive impact in preserving age old traditions and culture. For many, home-made films will lead to the constant practice of happiness in their own ways.

By Chimi Dorji (Teacher)

Balling Higher Secondary School


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Seven Missed Calls: A review


25 July 2010

Grudge and revenge is the subject of the latest action flick Seven Missed Calls, which is drawing a good number of audiences at the Lugar The atre in Thimphu.

The film revolves around the central theme of how people can get trapped in a vicious cycle of grudge. The chain never breaks as one person keeps confronting the other. Laying down arms and deciding to break the cycle eludes human beings because of ego. It is also a story of suspicion, and test of trust and love.

The movie is a sequel to Ar unachal Pradesh to Thimphu.

With the earlier cast resuming their roles and a strong storyline, the film is a response to the overwhelming demand from the audience, who could not get enough of the first part, said Jigme Ring, the male protagonist and director of the film.

Produce by Kinden Enter tainment at a cost of Nu 1.5 million, the film was released on June 24 in Paro.

The feedback from the pub lic is good and the turnover promising, said Jigme Ring.

Sangay Dorji, businessman and frequent movie goer, said he has not seen anything quite like this before in a Bhutanese film.

“My daughter wanted to watch this film. I thought it to be boring but, to my own surprise, I enjoyed the film,” said Sangay Dorji.

Many people said they en joyed the action sequence and songs, but thought the story was not convincing.

Ugyen, an employee of a private firm, said he did not enjoy the film.

“It has a little too much of action,” he said.

Seven Missed Calls is also being screened in Mig Hall in Phuntsholing.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sarim Jarim

Source: Review : Saarim Jarim | Druk Trowa

Just like the Ying and the Yang are two opposite and different things but complement each other, so are the two characters in the Film who are two different people but somehow complete each other even though they don’t know it initially.

Tshering is a police officer who is having problems at work since a convict escapes from prison while he is on duty and he gets a verbal thrashing from his boss leaving him angry and feeling lower than the dirt below his feet.

Tandin is a college graduate who is frustrated with her life since she cannot get a job for herself though she is highly qualified. She drinks and goes to commit suicide because of her failure but is saved by Tshering who is at the same spot at the moment and feels that it is his duty to stop the cowardliness.  Tandin is thrown out of her sister’s house and seeing that she has nowhere to go, Tshering offers to let her stay at his place till she gets a job but as Tandin begins to prolong her stay it results in her falling in love with him and Tshering getting irritated with her every time. Tshering has many other love interests in his life and this makes Tandin sad and hopeless. However, she is persuaded and instigated by Tshering’s orderly (Phurpa Thinley) to win him over. Tandin tries her best but to no avail. Tshering doesn’t show the slightest interest in her and soon she leaves his home feeling dejected.

It is only after she leaves that he misses her and realizes that he has fallen in love with her. He realizes that “Jarim” (as he lovingly calls her) completes him. They are finally reunited but then arises objections from his family in the beginning who finally submit to the love of “Sarim” and “Jarim” in the end.

The movie has been well scripted and the songs in the movie will set many people humming to the tunes. “Sarim” and “Jarim” along with Phurpa Thinley manage to produce comedy which is continual and relieving. The movie has the ingredients that make up a commercially viable must watch Film supplying comedy, romance, sadness, songs and dance.