The Silent Holy Stones
Introduction by Ling Zhang, PhD student, Department of Cinema and Media Studies.
Followed by discussion with the filmmaker and reception.
Filmmaker Pema Tseden (Wanma Caidan in Chinese), the son of Tibetan nomads and the first director to film entirely in the Tibetan language, makes award-winning films that meditate on the meaning of culture and tradition in contemporary life, with Tibet as his canvas. The Silent Holy Stones (Lhing Vjags Kyi Ma Ni Rdo Vbum) observes the magnetizing forces of Westernization and consumerism surrounding a ten-year-old Tibetan boy. Called by his elders to train as a Buddhist monk, Little Lama spends most of his life in the isolated Guwa monastery, until a short trip home finds him glued to the family television and VCR, where no amount of religious devotion or family pleading can reach him.
Tseden’s films include The Grassland (2004), The Search (2009) and Old Dog (2010). The Silent Holy Stones won the 2005 Golden Rooster, a major Chinese award. Recipient of an MFA in film production from Beijing Film Academy, he has also published more than 50 novels both in Tibetan and Chinese, some of which have been translated into English, French and German and other languages. Published works include Temptation, a collection of short stories; Master in Tibet, a full-length biography; and Never-Ending Tales, a lengthy translation work. The Chinese fiction series Dream of a Street Singer will be published in this year.
(2005, China, 35mm, 102 min, Tibetan with English subtitles)
Sponsored by the Film Studies Center Graduate Student Curatorial Program and the Center for East Asian Studies.