This is a film by Anika Tokarchuk following the interlocking stories of three people, the reincarnate lama Khentsye Rinpoche, who is making his latest film; the Taiwanese seeker Yuan Ren, who has ordained under Rinpoche, but now has to serve in the army back in Taiwan; and Bhagay, a Tibetan monk who goes to the USA to fulfil his dreams.
The stories are told parallel to each other, and to the film which Khentsye Rinpoche is working on at this point in time: Travellers and Magicians, which itself is concerned with reality and illusion, peoples’ dreams and aspirations.
As in other films which feature Rinpoche he seems to be constantly questioning his own role in Tibetan society, and moves a little uneasily between being a high lama in the east, with many responsibilities and duties; and being a film maker, amongst other things, when he is in the west.
The film also watches the life changes of two of his disciples, one of whom is conscripted into the Taiwanese army for two years national service, and the other who wanders away from his monks’ life, seeking satisfaction in western material society.
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