Nepal Post 2 An Australian’s reflection

YES I made it, well I made it to the end of the first week of the internship.

Why is it that hard might you say? Well, I have a new appreciation for what an immigrant goes through landing in another country, not being able to speak the language know the systems or communicate.

It is tough being an outsider here or anywhere where you can’t speak the language. Sometimes it feels they are making joes about me behind my back. But hey it’s probably my neurosis. Anyway the good stuff.

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The experience whilst hard is incredibly exciting challenging and ever-changing. If you ever want to do something like this leave your expectations at home and be ready for anything. not only am I shooting stories for VSN but I am training local staff. One day in a woman’s centre who teaches English to adults who have never had the chance.

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woman’s education centre

To being invited for dinner by one of my interviewees who is a homestay host. Eating and enjoying the company of her and VSN’s volunteers.

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Every day is so diverse I went out for a walk around Bhaktapur this morning and found myself in a precession of Hindus chanting an unbelievable eye-opening experience.

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Hindu ceremony

Next week I meet the director of VSN for whom I found out is the brother of the founder and the uncle of the current coordinator. I shot a piece today with the coordinator who spoke with such passion about the future of the Nepalese people and the role VSN can play. I will also be interviewing a fully robed monk in a monastery here in Kathmandu.

After a tough first few days I really feel like I am hitting my stride getting used to everything from the pace of life to the food and knowing the limitations of my equipment. My camera has overheated a few times. When it overheats I have to stop and cool it down. The heat drains the batteries which isn’t good.  On Sunday I am being taken up on a cable car to a mountain top shrine right up the cliff face of the Kathmandu Valley. It should be quite something. Till next time by for now….

Samsara review in 4k HD

Format Video

Yesterday I had the pleasure at of being at a screening of Samsara, in 4k high definition at the Astor Theatre, in St Kilda Melbourne.

Before I write my feelings about the film I have a technical nit pick . The Astor is a lovely theatre but something was amiss with the projection. The film lacked sharpness and at times was very fuzzy. I feel that it possibly was not focussed properly. Its a shame as it didn’t show of the digital 70mm film print at its best. For that I will await the Blu Ray, which by all accounts is flawless.

Samsara is the followup film to Baraka a non verbal documentary which leaves the viewer to make what they will from the way the images are edited together and shot. I enjoyed Samsara a lot more than Baraka. There seemed to be a lot more variety and conceptually I felt it was more human.

The sequences had more synergy to them. For instance you would see a child getting christened then it would follow through to someones funeral. We see religion , consumerism the work place . The film really highlights that as people we are really grains of sand in a far bigger thing that is life. We are diverse and we are complicated.

The film has the amazing ability to almost put you in a hypnotic state and for your imagination to run wild as the images of death and creation flow by your eyes.

Some may say “why no commentary” the fact is , the film doesn’t need it. Its a piece of art that asks you to contemplate your existence and meaning on this earth.

The cinematography is incredible . All budding camera people should see it just for that element alone. The music is sublime . Watch the food factory workers go about there business to the rhythm of the music . Highly recommended go catch it on the big screen while you can.

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