Pig at the Crossing Set by Khyentse Norbu for virtual premiere on May 11

- through Henry Oudin

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Pig at the crossroads, the latest film from Bhutanese filmmaker Khyentse Norbu (also known as Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche), will premiere virtually on May 11. The film is available in two languages: Dzongkha and English, lasts 119 minutes and is distributed by Khyentse Norbu's production house Norling Studios, based in Thimphu.

The film's homepage proudly notes that Pig at the crossroads was rejected from 30 major film festivals, highlighting an unorthodox premise and an unconventional marketing campaign. Khyentse Norbu proudly celebrates the production, plot and promotion of his film, with the website stating that it is "made in collaboration with a group of young Bhutanese filmmakers". The homepage celebrates the fact that Khyentse Norbu has intentionally pushed the talents of this "motley group" of "emerging voices, many of whom have embarked on their first cinematic journey with this company." (MediaOutReach)

As a virtual premiere, the film will be screened in five screenings in different time zones.

Perhaps a reflection of Khyentse Norbu's teaching style, which often challenges students with unorthodox methods of thinking or confronts devotees with uncomfortable scenarios, the film is a bold foray into the "middle" world of the bardo, that Dolom's protagonist encounters after a less-than-savory setup. The synopsis notes:

DOLOM, 29, a passionate YouTube creator and newly appointed school teacher in Bhutan, has a one-night stand with a married woman, DEKI, 32. When she discovers that she is pregnant, Dolom concocts a plan to cover up the affair and save her reputation. . While traveling to Deki, Dolom has a motorcycle accident and wakes up in a bizarre and chaotic world.

Little by little, he begins to realize that he is in fact dead. With the help of a mysterious guide, Dolom navigates this in-between realm and faces his past and the consequences of his actions. As time collapses around him, he must choose to right his wrongs and abandon his attachment to himself or allow himself to be trapped and wander in a dreamlike in-between state for timelessness.


The imagery of a pig at a crossroads is also a striking motif that will productively challenge viewers with several ideas relating to non-duality. The pig, representing desire, is one of the three animals representing the three poisons that fuel samsara.

Khyentse Norbu's past films include The mug (1999) Travelers and magicians (2003) and Looking for a lady with fangs and a mustache (2019). In his director's statement, he said:

I'm on a lifelong journey to tell stories that explore the full range of human nature, including the darkest emotions that lead us into morally questionable situations – the struggle to do what is considered "right." ". I'm intrigued by "good and evil" and the possibility of seeing goodness in a character, despite their morally questionable behavior. I want to create subtle emotional narratives that leave an open question in the viewer's heart.

Through the sudden death of the main character, this film will explore the Buddhist idea of ​​the "bardo" (afterlife) experience through rich magical realism, creative storytelling and symbolism. This film will poke holes in our strong belief in a truly existing self and in the concepts we cultivate to construct the world around us. The experience at the moment of death is nothing other than what we experience in each moment. The film will encourage us to let go at every moment.

Visually, I am deeply inspired by the work of the great filmmaker Yasujirō Ozu in his use of color and wide angle and long shot cinematography. Films like Tokyo Story allow the energy and magical elements of a city to come to life while focusing on an in-depth narrative of one person's struggle. I want to create visuals that give space to breathe within the frame, thus providing a richer experience of the story. Bhutan is a beautiful and dynamic country – endlessly cinematic.

I also thought about ways to promote and nurture art and cinema in my home country, Bhutan. I decided to make this film using almost entirely the raw talent and ambitious energy of a group of young creatives from Bhutan who want to come together to build this story with me. We will bring in a few professionals to help mentor the rest of the budding filmmakers. I hope to plant the seed of joy in the creative process and confidence in these young artists, for the chance to accomplish what would have otherwise seemed impossible to them.

(Khyentse Norbu)

As Khyentse Norbu is keen to point out: “No pigs were harmed during the making of this film. »

See more

Internationally acclaimed filmmaker Khyentse Norbu’s “Pig at the Crossing” will premiere virtually on May 11, 2024 worldwide after festival rejections (MediaOutReach)

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Article Pig passing by by Khyentse Norbu will premiere virtually on May 11 and appears first on Buddhadoor Global.

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Henry Oudin

Henry Oudin is a Buddhist scholar, spiritual adventurer and journalist. He is a passionate seeker of the depths of Buddhist wisdom, and travels regularly to learn more about Buddhism and spiritual cultures. By sharing his knowledge and life experiences on Buddhist News, Henry hopes to inspire others to embrace more spiritual and mindful ways of living.

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