20 September 2018 | ma-cortes
Moving picture set in early-90s Kathmandu , full of drama , emotion , sacrifice and touching scenes
This is a thought-provoking and beautifully dramatic film , packing a stirring and enjoyable story , though slowly paced and paying tribute to the sacrificed teachers working in far countries , this time in Nepal . The film is set early-90s Kathmandu, there Laia (Verónica Echegui) befriends another teacher named Sharmila (Sumyata Bhattarai) , as she becomes her dearest friend ; both of them work side by side to launch a new project to help unfortunate and distressed children as well as take on an important educational aim in the slums of Kathmandu . As the sensible starring soon find extreme poverty and a devastatingly bleak and dated educational teaching that leaves out the most needy , though step by step they get to raise the ancient system . But, sooner or later Laia will struggle to keep a balance between an unstoppable desire for radical change and the ways of the local impoverished castes . Against time and a corrupt system , and to provide a solution , Laia finds a white marriage of convenience with Tsering (Norbu Tsering Gurung) , but a bit later on , both of whom fall in love . As she has a crunch with the stranger she marries . Now, more than ever, Laia has to struggle for both ; however, an imminent deportation will threaten to put an end to their strong efforts . Although subsequent happenings will distance Laia from her soul-mate beyond repair . As Laia finds herself torn between a new love and her commitment to the children she helps . It will, however, always unite her to Sharmila and small Kushila, in a personal journey into the depths of the Nepalese society and also to her most inner self .
Based on real events, about a young Catalan teacher, called ¨Victoria Subirana¨ , whose deeds were written on a book that inspired this film . As she moves to Kathmandu in the early 90's, to volunteer in a local school , then she decides to get married out of convenience, so as to legalize her situation , but Victoria/Laia will inevitably have to face the unbearable burden of choosing between her commitment to the little pariahs of society, and her newly-found lover . Intelligent drama with plenty of emotion , attractive scenes and sensational performances . This is a deliberately paced flick , a satisfying journey of love , justice and self-discovery amidst social poornesss , as the philanthropic starring will soon encounter the region's extreme poverty ; as well as a weak educational system . It displays great feeling , emotion and provoking melodrama in which two teachers take on strong choices surrounding humanitarianism and tough lives through civil unrest . This brooding flick sometimes results to be slow-moving , relying heavily on the long relationship among three protagonists ; and both of them compliment each other with their destine to help the unfortunate kiddies . Verónica Echegui gives a lively and sensitive acting as Laia, an inspired young Catalan, volunteers to work as a teacher at a school, driven solely by her love for children and her dream to teach the needy and poor kids of the slums . The newcomer Sumyata Bhattarai plays competently the Nepalese teacher, Sharmila, a determined woman who will soon have to take a sad decision , either have a female baby , or abort . And the unexperienced Norbu Tsering Gurung plays Tsering a polite young man from the mountains of Mustanga with whom Laia has a romance and little by little a timid love will bloom.
Adequate and colorful cinematography by Antonio Riestra , considered to be one of the best Spanish cameramen including notorious titles such as : Last Knights , Amores perros , Lidice , Eloise , Bachelors, Pa Negre , among others . Emotive and sensitive musical score by Pascal Gaigne .The motion picture was originally directed by Iciar Bollain . She has worked as a leading actress in selected films like The South (1983) by 'Victor Erice', Malaventura (1988) by 'Manuel Gutiérrez Aragon , Land and Freedom (1995) by Ken Loach, it became an acclaimed audience's and critics' choice ; Leo (2000) by 'Jose Luis Borau' that won the Best Actress nomination Goya Spanish Academy Awards and Nos Miran (2002) . She is a prestigious producer , writing and directing since then both documentaries and fiction films. In 1995, she wrote and directed her feature film debut, ¨Hola, ¿estás Sola?¨ (1995), awarded with Best New Director in Valladolid Festival and was nominated for Best Directorial Debut by the Spanish Film Academy. The film became one of Spain's 1996 box office hits. Flowers from another world(1999), was her second feature film and was awarded at Cannes Film Festival 1999, Best Film in the International Critics' Week ; ¨Take my eyes¨, 2003, was her following film as writer and director, winner of 7 Goyas Spanish Academy Awards, including Best Film, among many other international awards. Her next feature film is ¨Mataharis (2007)¨ , subsequently , this ¨Katmandu¨ and finally ¨El Olive¨ at her best .