Seven Years in Tibet (1997)

<strong class="MovieTitle">Seven Years in Tibet</strong> (1997)

(On Cable TV, July 2015) It seems amazing that an adventure film spanning several years, multiple countries, splendid mountain vistas and political upheavals would turn out to be so… boring.  A noticeably younger-looking Brad Pitt stars as a mountain adventurer stuck in Nepal during and after World War Two, eventually becoming an advisor to a young Dalai Llama.  Given the Himalayan setting, the scenery is spectacular, with a few mountaineering sequences to making this slightly less dull.  The problems with Seven Years in Tibet are common to a surprising number of adventure movies: It just feels interminable.  While doesn’t fall into the trap of loosely-structured episodes (even resorting to an artificial father-son bit of drama not found in the original book to provide increasing tension), this is a seriously long film that doesn’t go anywhere for a long while.  To the film’s credit, director Jean-Jacques Annaud does present a sympathetic representation of Nepal at a crucial time, and Lhakpa Tsamchoe is a rare example of a Tibetan actress being featured in a big movie.  In-between Pitt and the mountain scenery, Seven Years in Tibet does have a few things going for it.  But it could and should have been just a bit more interesting considering its subject matter.

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