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Yarne

Andrew Krakower
United States, 2020, 15 min.

In Nepali, Tibetan with English subtitles.
This film is family friendly.

The money earned by 11-year-olds Sonam and Tashi for doing prayers is only enough to share one small Coke. Sonam is lucky to even get a sip before Tashi, the monastery bully, drinks the entire bottle. Yarne is an annual six-week period when Buddhist monks remain within the monastery grounds for focused study and practice, yet for child monks, it's more like house arrest. Tired of wasting his money, Sonam decides to save up every rupee he earns during Yarne to buy a soccer ball, but first he will have to stand up to Tashi.

Director's Statement

With a cast comprised of actual Buddhist monks, Yarne is a rare glimpse at the social fabric that exists in the dormitory life rather than the ceremonial shrine room of a monastery. I attempted to capture the child monks as nascent boys caught between an ancient tradition and the modern world influences of money-making, Coca-cola and smart phones. The romanticized characterization of Buddhist monks, particularly child monks, as mystical Himalayan meditators simply did not represent my experience of living in Kathmandu and working in a Buddhist monastery. So I was inspired to attempt a more faithful depiction. The boys I knew were naughty, mischievous; they broke rules, hated school; they bully and fight. But unlike most of us who struggle to live harmoniously under one roof with just a few people, these boys have to find a way to live peacefully with hundreds, which I find more impressive than years of solitary meditation in a Himalayan cave.

Category: Drama.
Themes: Community, Culture, Religion, Youth.

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