Valley of Saints (image 1)

Kashmir, almost in defiance of the danger that surrounds it, is a beautiful place, and Musa Syeed has captured that with remarkable patience and love.

J. Hurtado, Twitch

Screened as part of NZIFF 2013

Valley of Saints 2012

Directed by Musa Syeed

The ravishing glory of the Lake Dal region in Kashmir stands revealed in this delicate tale of two young boatmen who dream and scheme to head to Mumbai together. “A lyrical, tender film.” — Hollywood Reporter

India / USA In English and Kashmiri with English subtitles
82 minutes DCP

Director, Screenplay, Editor

Producer

Nicholas Bruckman

Photography

Yoni Brook

Music

Mubashir Mohi-ud-Din

With

Gulzar Bhat (Gulzar)
,
Neelofar Hamid (Asifa)
,
Afzal Sofi (Afzal)
,
Hajji Salam Bhat (uncle)
,
Ghulam Hassan (smuggler)
,
Nazeer Bhat (wise man)
,
Gul Javeed (policeman)

Festivals

Sundance, Rotterdam 2012

Awards

Audience Award (World Cinema), Sundance Film Festival 2012

The scenic glory of a setting few of us will ever visit stands revealed in this gentle tale. Two young boatmen ferrying passengers across Lake Dal in Kashmir dream and scheme of heading to Mumbai together. A young Western-educated woman researching pollution in the lake complicates their plans. Digital technology enabled Kashmiri filmmaker Musa Syeed to shoot in one of the world’s most chronically destabilised territories without drawing hostile attention. The result is a film that sings with the lyrical beauty of its setting while expressing a sharp sense of regret for opportunities stagnating in the face of incessant conflict. Street skirmishes are regarded with the same accustomed eye as Syeed applies to beads of rain on a water lily. “The beauty of its images… as well as its tender, elusive story of love and friendship, set against unsettling political unrest, kept me glued to my seat.” — Meredith Brody, Indiewire