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Himalaya Film Festival: Journey to a Hidden Universe - in New York City

If you always wanted to explore the Himalayas, you now need to be in New York City's Greenwich Village, the cultural heart of Manhattan. The Quad Cinema is running the Himalaya Film Festival from Friday, October 22 till 28. The festival is a celebration of films featuring the Himalayan region and its captivating people, culture, nature and politics: a virtual opportunity to experience what inspires the people living on top of the world.

The Himalaya Film Festival offers a fascinating selection of 31 films, featuring breathtaking images of Bhutan, India, Nepal, and Tibet. The films highlight dramatic landscapes, heart-warming scenes of everyday life, cultural gems and colorful festivals.

Thangka painter Tashi Norbu opens the festival at 12.30 pm October 22 by creating an actual Tibetan painting of a Buddha, while reciting Tara mantras during the ritual of the bodhisattava of compassion of which The Dalai Lama is regarded to be the reincarnation.

The festival covers a broad range of subjects. In "Thin Ice" emancipated Ladakhi Buddhist and Muslim women are faced with male opposition, while in "Riding Solo to the Top of the World" a lonesome traveller drives his motorcycle from Mumbai to the most remote place on earth; the Changthang Plateau, bordering with China.

Tibetan issues are well represented; "A Year in Tibet", is an uncensored documentary series about Gyantse, Tibet's third largest town. Many more intimate portraits can be viewed; ethnographic gems like "On the road with the red god: MACHHENDRANATH" is a must-see award-winning film in which impassioned devotees pull a 65-feet tall unwieldy chariot in the Kathmandu Valley. In the two Emmy Award-winning "Bhutan - Taking the Middle Path to Happiness" we take a glimpse into Bhutan's concept of 'Gross National Happiness'.

The Himalaya Film Festival, founded in 2003 by Himalaya Archief Nederland, is an Amsterdam based yearly cultural event which has branches in Tokyo and Tallini (Estonia).

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