Shocked and saddened by the Taliban’s 2001 destruction of the giant carved Buddhas of Afghanistan’s Bamiyan region, British filmmaker Phil Grabsky travelled to the area in order to make a documentary about the war-ravaged region through the eyes of its people. There he found gregarious cave-dwelling youngster Mir, who became the year-long subject of his 2003 documentary, ‘The Boy Who Plays on the Buddhas of Bamiyan’. Some time later, Grabsky returned for this much more in-depth eight-year portrait of the growing lad and his impoverished family. The politics of war are broached occasionally but mostly the camera sits back and observes as the family’s lives unfold. It’s overlong and not incredibly enlightening, but it’s compassionate enough to hold the attention.
Friday September 30 2011