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Samsara - Film Review

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by Miyan (subscribe)
I'm a a part-time vocal coach and a mom of three lovely kids. I have a passion in writing besides music and languages.
Published December 10th 2012
A new film experience: inspirational

I wish I could say that Samsara is some sort of a relaxing and meditative experience, but being a non-verbal film, personal interpretations of the images may encourage both positive and negative thoughts. One thing I'm sure about is that whoever watches this film will be inspired by nature and humanity.

The ever turning wheel of life" is what the Sanskrit word Samsara signifies. The natural wonders of the world, as well as the lifestyles and traditions in twenty-five countries has been captured on film for almost five years by director Ron Fricke and producer Mark Magidson. The images are of highest resolution and the perspective shifts of the pictures offer astounding views.


The music is exotic. The drone, the sound of gongs and wind instruments in a repetitive pattern are entrancing. As the images show the fast life in the modern world, the music then changes its rhythm to suit the change of scenery. Somehow, the music seems to narrate what is seen on the screen.

The film starts with the traditional Balinese dance by three young girls. The elegant movements while maintaining wide eyes are not easy to miss. The dance finishes with the camera focusing on the wide eyes like as if suggesting for the viewers to be ready to see the world. From here, the film guides the audience to see the nature's force (erupting volcano), the sacred grounds, the disaster zones, the industrial sites, and the events happening in different parts of the world. Therefore, we see and empathise with man's spirituality and experiences.


Samsara seems to tacitly offers contrasting standards of life. For example, in one image shows Arabic women covered up from head to toe, in front of a big canvas ad of men wearing just underwear. There is also a shot of slum area and as the camera focus zooms out, big, tall buildings are exposed just behind the shanty town.

How can something so beautiful and done with great care and careful estimation be destroyed so easily? Or how can someone so innocent be armed with guns? These are some of the questions that I asked when I saw this film.


Samsara is an inspiration and an eye opener. Although the non-narrative approach may not suit everyone, Samsara, in my opinion, is an experience one should not miss.

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Why? A new film experience
Where: Movie theatre near you
Your Comment
I loved this movie. I found it to be both inspirational and confronting.
by Rebecca Kerr (score: 1|52) 2481 days ago
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