The Unwinking Gaze The Inside Story of the Dalai Lama's Struggle for Tibet
Around 30 years ago the Dalai Lama, Tibet's spiritual leader, publicly renounced his country's claim for independence from China, and to this day he still insists that separating the two countries is not his aim. The Chinese government remains convinced that the Dalai Lama is a separatist and – in public at least – refuses to speak with him.
However, as Joshua Dugdale's documentary shows, the wheels of diplomacy are ticking away behind the scenes. The film, shot over three years and gaining unprecedented access to the Dalai Lama and his entourage, also gives us a startlingly intimate portrait of the man himself, a constantly giggling, extremely canny politician with little patience for his reputation back home as a supernatural healer.
Shot mostly on a handheld camera, the film spends much of its time hovering around the sidelines, eavesdropping on the Dalai Lama's coterie of whispering monks and advisors, but it is impressively even-handed, Dugdale seeking out comment from fiery Tibetan nationalists and emollient Chinese bureaucrats alike.