TIFF 2017 Movie Review: BLACK KITE (Canada/Afghanistan 2017)

Movie Reviews of films that will be playing at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) in 2017. Go to TIFF 2017 Movie Reviews and read reviews of films showing at the festival.

BLACK KITE.jpgAgainst oppression, change, and seismic political shifts, a father and his daughter find solace in the seemingly clandestine act of kite flying, in the latest by Afghan filmmaker Tarique Qayumi.

Director: Tarique Qayumi
Writer: Tarique Qayumi

Review by Gilbert Seah

When Taique Oayunmi’s film, BLACK KITE opens, the audience witnesses a a political judgment/verdict of the violent chopping off of his hands of Arian (Haji Gul) which is then expanded to an execution the next morning.

In the prison that night, Arian almost dies of thirst but offers to tell his story in exchange for a drink of water from his fellow inmate. But the story that unfolds is a different one. The next scene is one with a little boy fascinating with kite flying.

The boy is Arian who learns both how to make and fly kites from his uneducated father. It is never clear exactly the reason Arian is to be executed in the morning. The only hint is that the enemy suspects him of sending messages to the resistance by his kites, but then why offer him pardon at the end of the film instead of execution.

The film incorporates some animation that appear at various points throughout the film for no apparent reason. As a result the animation appears out of place and totally unnecessary. It also tends to become a distraction of the events that are taking place.

Instead of a political tale, Qayumi’s film ends up trivializing the events to the story of a man in love of the flying of kites.

Clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8odaf9TqC8


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