THE EAGLE HUNTRESS (2016) 5 Stars (out of 5)
“SOARING DOCUMENTARY OF A 13 YEAR OLD GIRL’S COMING OF AGE IS ONE OF THE BEST PICTURES OF THE YEAR!”
“THE EAGLE HUNTRESS (2016) follows Aisholopan, a 13-year-old girl, as she trains to become the first female in twelve generations of her Kazakh family to become an eagle hunter, and rises to the pinnacle of a tradition that has been handed down from father to son for centuries. Set against the breathtaking expanse of the Mongolian steppe, THE EAGLE HUNTRESS features some of the most awe-inspiring cinematography ever captured in a documentary, giving this intimate tale of a young girl’s quest the dramatic force of an epic narrative film.”
The above paragraph is the word-for-word press release sent to all film critics.
I have not changed a word because it absolutely describes this documentary without spoiling the story. My contribution now is to add three descriptive words to complete my review of this film:
ADORABLE: Aisholopan has a face that lights up the darkened theater auditorium. She has a smile that will capture your heart.
INSPIRATIONAL: The father-daughter relationship between Aisholopan and Nurgaiv is as beautiful as we will ever see on film. He is a parent’s parent; as well as a teacher’s teacher.
THRILLING: A testimonial to why I love the art films and documentaries that come out of the film festivals. Credit director Otto Bell and cinematographer Simon Niblett. The use of drone-mounted cameras presents the majesty of the Central Asian steppes never before captured quite like this.
I cannot think of a better film to go as a family together during this time of Thanksgiving.
SPECIAL NOTE: There is also another wonderful and charming “coming-of-age mainstream film now playing that I can strongly recommend. You will find THE EDGE OF SEVENTEEN (2016) listed next month as one of my Top Ten Films of 2016. We return to the familiar world of high school teenagers trying to find their comfort zone and confidence. But this one is different, filled with warmth, wisdom, heart and humor. I absolutely loved this 5 Stars (out of 5) film.