This is a film about the last nomads living in the harsh wildernesses of Ladakh. It was made by Marianne Chaud who brought us Himalaya, Land of Women; and helped in the making of Becoming a Woman in Zanskar.
Like those films, this one is an intimate portrait of the people of Ladakh and their way of life in these remote regions, and the difficult decisions they are having to make regarding their lifestyle and their future.
It opens with one family selling their goat herd and taking a minivan to go and live in the city: one more family is leaving the region because of the extreme difficulty of the life.
There are now only 20 families living in the vast region of Karnak – down from around 120 families within living memory – and at the end of the film we see that even more have had to give up on the life and move to town.
Meanwhile we see and hear from the people, get some understanding of the difficulties and frustrations they face, and the hard life they are living in one of the remotest places on the planet.
All of this is brought to us thanks to the remarkable film work of Marianne Chaud who lived with the people, speaks their language fluently, and became their friend, so much so they trust her to speak out about their innermost thoughts and feelings.
One can’t help think that the end of these communities is a great loss in so many ways, but it is also important to understand that the people themselves are trying to make the best decisions for themselves and their families.
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