UK, 2006 (MIFF 2007, Documentaries)
Director: Emma Hindley
Recently restored colour films of Tibet shot in the 40s and 50s elucidate what this magnificent land was like before its brutal occupation by China. Now in exile in India, the Dalai Lama and 120,000 other displaced Tibetans are waiting to return to their homeland. Over half a century ago, they lived peacefully in Tibet, their world revolving around a series of colourful religious festivals. Watching rare footage of this past life, the Dalai Lama reminisces about his childhood in the monastery, of how deeply he missed his mother and envied his brother's countless toys (he was expected to commit to nobler pursuits even as a boy). While His Holiness studied for his rigorous monastic exams - which included publicly debating with his elders - the Chinese prepared to invade his country.
D Emma Hindley P Annabel Hobley WS Emma Hindley TD digibeta/2006/90mins