The Swallows of Kabul
How do you ensure that a film about the Taliban becomes more than a one-dimensional indictment? To achieve this, French actress and theatre & film director Zabou Breitman sat down with likewise French animation filmmaker Eléa Gobbé-Mevellec. In their immersive animation film based on a novel by Yasmina Khadra, they paint in beautiful watercolour hues an occasionally harsh world populated by authentic, layered characters. In order to better relate to the drawn characters, the film was shot with the voice actors dressed in costume.
Kabul, 1998: the Taliban have seized power, which has far-reaching consequences for young, liberal-minded teacher Mohsen and his striking wife Zunaira. Mohsen's dream of becoming a diplomat has been shattered, while Zunaira is allowed to walk the streets of Kabul only when fully veiled. Then there's Atiq, a jailer who guards people who have been sentenced to death. His wife, Musarrat, is terminally ill. Following an unfortunate event, the lives of these four people become tied together.