Dir: Pema Tseden
Starring: Shide Nyima, Yangshik Tso
What gives a man his identity? Furthermore, what gives a country its identity? These issues are at the heart of “Tharlo”, a film by Tibetan writer-director Pema Tseden. The eponymous Tharlo is a Tibetan shepherd, steeped in the old ways, who is required to obtain a government issued ID card. In the process of doing this he makes the acquaintance of Yangchuo, a young woman eager to swap the slow pace of Tibetan life for the hectic allure of the modern world. From this moment Tharlo undergoes a gradual identity crisis, tradition and modernity both laying claim to his soul. A touching, bittersweet fable that plunges the viewer into an unfamiliar culture. A true gem of world cinema.