Saturday, August 30, 2014

Crossing Bridges Review


Crossing Bridges
Director: Sange Dorjee Thongdok
Cast: Phuntsu Khrime, Anshu Jamsenpa
Ratings : *** ½

Crossing Bridges, quite literally and metaphorically, is the story of how a young man- Tashi, who has returned to his village in the mountains of Arunachal Pradesh, learns to cross the “bridge” that connects- or rather separates- his roots from the “outside” world, where he was living for last eight years. He must have crossed that bridge eight years ago too when he wanted to embark upon the journey from his home to the place where he has been working ever since as a web developer. But while returning, he finds it difficult: he cannot identify with the place; he is now as much as an outsider as the viewers of this film (Though his “outsider” behaviour to the place is tough to accept, as he has returned after only eight years. Is it that long a period?).

The film is the first ever made in Sherdukpen—a language spoken by an ethnic group of around 4000 people in Arunachal Pradesh. The audience is obviously not restricted to them. Even the director would not have targeted his film for them in the first place. The language is merely the medium to express his intimate thoughts. Feeling this intimacy through the central character of the film, it certainly comes across as a personal film at many levels—Thongdok’s love letter to the place and its people. (It is also shot very affectionately by Pooja Gupte).

The homecoming plot of the film clearly hearkens back to Ashutosh Gowariker’s Swades (2004). ... Read full review here.

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