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Courtesy Cartoon Saloon

‘The Breadwinner’ Is Anguished and Charming Film About Life Under Taliban Rule

Animated Film Lays Out Hardships In Tapestry of Fable-Like Storytelling and Harsh Realities


In this anguished but also charming Canadian animated film, the hardships of life — especially for women and girls — under Taliban rule in Afghanistan are laid out through a tapestry of sweet, fable-like storytelling and the harsh realities of the day. Directed by Nora Twomey and based on a book by Deborah Ellis, The Breadwinner follows intrepid young protagonist Parvana, who disguises herself as a boy to gain access to a misogynist society where her father is imprisoned. Amid the painful conditions of Taliban life, the galvanizing power of family and of hope remains, as when our hero quotes her father’s axiom: “It is rain that makes the flowers grow, not thunder.”

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