Hema Hema: Sing Me a Song While I Wait by Khyentse Norbu will world premiere at the Locarno Film Festival as the opening night film of Open Doors Screenings 2016, a platform for talent of contemporary cinema in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar and Nepal.
Other filmmakers featured in the Open Doors Screenings include Mostofa Sarwar Farooki (a multi-award winning Bengali filmmaker), Midi Z and The Maw Naing (among the most inspiring, young voices from Myanmar, in Locarno with their first features Return to Burma and The Monk), Min Bahadur Bham from Nepal (a directorial debut, with Kalo Pothi – The Black Hen), Deepak Rauniyar (also from Nepal, a name already familiar at major international festivals) and other young talents from South Asia.
”Playing host to the masks and allure of Khyentse Norbu’s Hema Hema: Sing Me a Song While I Wait, and having its world premiere on the big screen, in the presence of Jeremy Thomas and its Bhutanese producer and actors, gives me great pride. This and the other films selected this year enable us to introduce a delegation of filmmakers who are making an active contribution to the development of a local new generation, who, more than ever before, is turning to the international scene.” Sophie Bourdon, Head of Open Doors.
Open Doors Screenings 2016 Lineup
Myanmar, Czech Republic · 2014 · DCP · Color · 95′ · o.v. Burmese
Director: The Maw Naing; Cast: Thein Swe Myint , Kyaw Nyi Thu , Han Newe Nyein , Moe San
Zawana, a young boy, enters a small monastery led by U Dahma but isn’t quite sure if this lifestyle is right for him. As the monastery faces a financial crisis and the departure of many of the monks, U Dahma gets sick. Having grown fond of the old man, Zawana understands that someone has to take care of him and of the whole community. Will he be up to the challenge?
Hema Hema: Sing Me a Song While I Wait
Bhutan, Hong Kong · 2016 · DCP · Color · 96′ · o.v. Dzongkha
Director: Khyentse Norbu; Cast: Sadon Lhamo , Tony Chiu-Wai LEUNG , Thinley Dorji , Tshering Dorji , ZHOU Xun
Somewhere deep in a forest of Bhutan, there is a gathering every twelve years of men and women chosen by the Old Man to enjoy a few days of anonymity. Masked silhouettes participate in rituals, performances and dances. Faceless, the men and the women allow themselves to be lascivious, playful and daring. One man attends this event for the first time and enters the experience like a new born. He stumbles clumsily through the first days, but quickly adapts, and when he spots Red Wrathful, he becomes totally intoxicated with her. But his desire will lead him down a dangerous path.
Nepal, USA · 2012 · DCP · Color · 73′ · o.v. Nepali
Director: Deepak Rauniyar; Cast: Asha M. Magrati , Saugat Malla , Shristi Ghimire , Karma , Dayahang Rai , Elum Dixit
In the middle of the Nepali mountains, numerous delays beset bus passengers as they try to make it to Kathmandu to take care of urgent business.
Kalo pothi (The Black Hen)
Nepal, Germany, Switzerland, France · 2015 · DCP · Color · 90′ · o.v. Nepali
Director: Min Bahadur Bham; Cast: Sukra Raj Rokaya , Benisha Hamal , Khadka Raj Nepali , Hansha Khadka , Jit Bahadur Malla
In 2001, in Muru, a district in north-west Nepal, a temporary ceasefire in the civil war allows the residents of a small Nepalese village to breathe a sigh of relief. Prakash and Kiran, two boys from different castes, become close friends as they search for a missing hen in the hope of selling its eggs.
Mya Ganaing (The Emerald Jungle)
Myanmar · 1934 · DCP · Black and White · 93′ · o.v. Burmese
Director: Maung Tin Maung; Cast: Daw Myint Myint , U Ba Saw Gyi , U Chit Shwe
Deep in the jungle where tigers, snakes and elephants are at home, U Pho Thwa owns a sawmill and lives with his granddaughter, Myint Myint, in a comfortable villa. But one day, Myint Myint falls off her horse and is saved from drowning in the river by a good-looking young man from Rangoon…
Return to Burma
Taiwan, Myanmar · 2011 · DCP · Color · 84′ · o.v. Chinese/Burmese
Director: Midi Z; Cast: WANG Shin-Hong
2015. Burma holds its first presidential election in decades. Many of the Burmese living abroad believe that time for change has finally come and that prosperity is at the end of the road. Xing-hong and Rong decide to return home, but a few days before leaving, Rong has an accident at work and dies, leaving Xing-hong alone to bring back his ashes. To his surprise, he arrives to his homeland to find out that many young people want to leave Burma, a country that seems now weirdly unfamiliar and distant to him.
Shunte ki pao! (Are You Listening!)
Bangladesh · 2012 · DCP · Color · 90′ · o.v. Bengali
Director: Kamar Ahmad Simon; Cast: Soumen Roy , The Villagers of Sutarkhali , Rahul Roy , Rakhi Vaidya
In Sutarkhali, a small village on the Bangladeshi coast, a family, having suffered from the endless floods and storms, tries to rebuild its life.
Bangladesh · 2012 · DCP · Color · 106′ · o.v. Bengali
Director: Mostofa Sarwar Farooki; Cast: Shahir Kazi Huda , Chanchal Chowdhury , Nusrat Imrose Tisha , Mosharof Karim
In a village in rural Bangladesh, Amin is the leader of the local community and bans every image he considers to be anti-islamic. He even claims that imagination is sinful and dangerous since it can wander into prohibited territory without permission… But change is difficult to resist, and in the end, the television that he hates so much, comes to the rescue, helping Amin to find a place where he and God are finally unified.
Bangladesh · 2015 · DCP · Color · 88′ · o.v. Bengali
Director: Rubaiyat Hossain; Cast: Shahana Goswami
Struggling to find herself in the sprawl of urban Bangladesh, Muslim theater actress Roya suffers from her husband’s wish for children and traditional life. Not interested in motherhood, she decides to reconstruct a famous and politically minded play for modern times, reclaiming her identity, her freedom and her sexuality in the process.
Director: Ishtiaque Zico
Bangladesh · 2010 · 35 mm · Color · 5′ · o.v.no dialogue
A Forgotten Story
Director: Tashi Gyeltshen
Bhutan · 2010 · DCP · Color · 7′ · o.v.no dialogue
Directors: Asmita Shrish , Fateme Ahmadi
Nepal, United Kingdom, China · 2015 · DCP · Color · 15′ · o.v.Nepali
I Am Time
Director: Mahde Hasan
Bangladesh · 2013 · DCP · Black and White · 10′ · o.v.Bengali
Director: Soe Moe Aung
Myanmar, Germany · 2013 · DCP · Color · 11′ · o.v.Burmese
Director: Sushan Prajapati
Nepal · 2015 · DCP · Color · 20′ · o.v.Nepali/Tharu
Lo sum choe sum
Director: Dechen Roder
Bhutan · 2015 · DCP · Color · 20′ · o.v.Dzongkha
Side Glance of Dragon
Director: We Ra Aung
Myanmar · 2014 · DCP · Color · 17′ · o.v.Burmese
Director: Sai Kong Kham
Myanmar, Germany · 2011 · DCP · Color · 7′ · o.v.Burmese
The Contagious Apparitions of Dambarey Dendrite
Directors: Pooja Gurung , Bibhusan Basnet
Nepal · 2013 · DCP · Color · 18′ · o.v.Nepali
Director: Abu Shahed Emon
Bangladesh, South Korea · 2012 · DCP · Color · 15′ · o.v.no dialogue
The Monk in the Forest
Director: Karma Wangchuk
Bhutan · 2015 · DCP · Color · 11′ · o.v.no dialogue