Himalaya – l’enfance d’un chef [Himalaya] (1999)

(On DVD, July 2006) This film certainly deserves such a majestic title when you consider the beauty of its cinematography. From the very first images, we’re in for a treat: wide-screen isn’t sweeping enough to contain the mountains, the colours and the dusty rusticity of the Himalayans. The music is similarly haunting, and the film never loses an occasion to remind you of it. Alas, fans of actual plot-driven films will soon hop in expectation as the film takes its time to advance. What story emerges is a decent competition between two heroes (one of the film’s most appealing traits is that there are no villains beyond the weather and the environment), one that comes to showcase the Himalayas in their entirety. Not for hyperactive moviegoers (though Himalaya features what may be the first action scene ever to involve a yak), but still a satisfying experience. Especially if you stick it in fast-forward.

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