THE MONK Filmatique’s Locarno Open Doors Series Continues

During the month of August and in collaboration with the Locarno International Film Festival’s Open Doors initiative, Filmatique will host a collection of films from new talents in Southeast Asia.

The Monk, Maw Naing (2014)
Copyright The Monk, Maw Naing (2014)

The Monk

Rescued from the streets of Yangon as a boy, Zawana is now an adolescent living in a rural monastery in Myanmar.

Though his abbot U Dahma has become ill and the monastery, like the surrounding community, fallen into victim to poverty and hardship, Zawana is in the midst of a crisis of faith— he remains unsure whether the path of the monk is right for him.

Temptation arrives in the form of a local girl, as do modern conveniences like a borrowed MP3 player.  Meanwhile Zawana becomes responsible for taking the man who rescued him back to the bright lights of contemporary Yangon.

The Monk is a naturalistic meditation on identity, existence and faith inside the rarely-seen, hermetic world of Myanmar, shown through the eyes of a young man on the brink of adulthood.  The first independent feature from Myanmar in 50 years, Maw Naing’s feature film debut premiered at Karlovy Vary, Jihlava, Sakhalin and Singapore.

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