The Monk and the Gun | Movie Evaluation


It’s 2006 and modifications are coming to the Himalayan nation of Bhutan. The beloved king, who had earlier set a objective for top “Gross Nationwide Happiness,” has abdicated and known as for democratic elections. Representatives of the election council, together with Tshering (Pema Zangpo Sherpa), are despatched into the countryside to coach the folks on find out how to vote. A mock election is held with the events being given totally different colours. When yellow wins overwhelmingly, the officers understand that the folks have chosen the colour related to the king. Bhutan was the final nation on this planet to get tv and Web. It seems like establishing a workable democracy goes to take some time.

In the meantime, an aged lama (Kelsang Choejey, an precise Buddhist lama) is making ready for the Full Moon Ceremony. Listening to of the upcoming elections, he says, “Issues must be made proper.” He then asks a younger monk, Tashi (Tandin Wangchuk), to get him two weapons.

This isn’t a straightforward task. Going door to door, Tashi discovers that most of the villagers have by no means even seen a gun. When he lastly finds one, he learns that it’s a uncommon rifle from the U.S. Civil Warfare additionally being sought by an American collector, Ronald Colman (Harry Einhorn). By his Bhutanese information Benji (Tandin Sonam), he affords to get the lama some AK47s in trade for the rifle. However Tashi takes the gun to the lama. What is going to he do with it?

Director Pawo Coyning Dorji gave us Lunana: A Yak within the Classroom,, which was nominated for the Finest Worldwide Movie Oscar in 2022. It additionally targeted on modifications coming to Bhutan by means of the story of a younger trainer despatched to a distant village. He discovers that happiness doesn’t come by means of Western issues like his mobile phone; as an alternative it derives from coronary heart connections and music.

A Monk and a Gun additionally contrasts the Bhutanese lifestyle with Western methods and obsessions. The Bhutanese villagers aren’t even satisfied that democracy is an efficient factor if it pits neighbor in opposition to neighbor. Will it carry happiness? One girl replies, “We have been already blissful.”

The title itself conveys the important thing distinction. Dorji makes one gun stand in for the West’s (and particularly the US’s) obsession with weapons, cash, and the facility derived from possession of them. However the Buddhist lama reveals us a unique perspective that comes from placing a monk and a gun collectively.


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