Belgium 2016, 87 min, Afghan Persian, Hebrew & English subtitles
The next generation of Afghanis is already preparing for life after the last foreign forces leave their country. Groups of children live with no adult care or supervision in mountains, caves, underground mines, and abandoned battlefields, littered with rusting tanks. They survive by robbing convoys of merchants on their way to the border, mining gemstones, dealing in opium, and selling leftover ammunition and landmines that they patiently extract while mumbling prayers asking that they don’t get blown up. Director Pieter-Jan De Pue spent seven years with these kids, American soldiers, and villagers living in breathtaking mountain settings. The story he created is part documentary and part fairytale. It stars children who smoke opium and slaughter sheep, but dream of getting married and building their brides enormous palaces guarded by lions.
Previous Festivals: Sundance, True/False