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Watched: 18 October

At times beautifully photographed, The Black Hen tells the story of two Nepalese boys from different castes who form a friendship against the backdrop of the Nepalese Civil War. It feels like typical festival fare for much of its duration, but there’s no doubt that the mountain region looks stunning and the film does occasionally surprise with its stylish, slow-mo dream sequences. We occasionally see violence (or the aftermath of violent acts) carried out by Maoist guerillas, but the war is very much an adult concern here, and largely in the background; this is a calm film about two children, for the most part, and in the two lead roles Khadka Raj Nepali and Sukraj Rokaya show promise. (**½)


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