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A “reactive” film project in the highest inhabited village in Badakhshan.

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Documentary film
Director: Carlos Casas, Saodat Ismailova
Hichigh, Badakshan, Pamir Mountains, Tajikistan.
HDV 1080i Color 70 min. and 52 min TV version.
Language: Sughnani with English subtitles

Log line:
The film traces the last days of life of Hichigh one of the highest inhabited villages in the world, which is planned for evacuation before the winter comes.


Zulobi, the 85 year old khalifa of Hichigh, doesn’t t want to leave the village where he has lived all his life, one of the most remote and high inhabited villages of Badakshan, the village is planned for evacuation before the winter, due to high risk of avalanches and landslides after the last earthquake. The death of the village will bring light into the threat and ties that has kept this community together and that now will separate them.
While they await to abandon the village, the stories come up and their memories revive the ghosts of the past, that come back, to regain their redemption,
At nights the village is surrounded by a pack of wolfs that due to a bad autumn are coming down for the sheep and goats, that will make the village feel close together and that will inspire new friendships and new ties in the village.
Zulobi will establish a new relationship with Azam a young shepherd, hoping to pass away to him knowledge he was keeping for his son, long gone to Moscow, from which he hasn’t heard in a long time.
Zulobi seems to accept finally he will never see his son again. In a certain way Azam becomes a testimony, and finds in Zulobi a father figure form which to learn and keep alive their traditions.


A “Reactive” film.
Avalanche is a documentary film that wants to become a tool for invigorating the life of one of the smallest but highest communities in Tajikistan. Hichigh. From the smallest community of around 25 inhabitants we understand a major issue that is fueling all the communities in Badakshan specially and Tajikistan in general.
The lost of culture and traditions and the loss of labor force, migrating to Russia, is leaving this village and the region without strength to recover. With this documentary we want first to document this reality to the world, and to the community, and then try to activate while filming the lost bounds with the old traditions, ways of living that were under severe sign of disappearing. We want the film to activate those lost traditions, in a way to recover and to try to solve the generational gap that separates the village being self subsistent to be dependent on external money arriving from Russia emigrates. Starting from one of the smallest communities can mean a lot specially if we manage to exemplify with it a bigger picture and issue and how to combat it. The work migration is a terminal force for all this communities and is acting like an avalanche to all these communities that are struggling to survive in a modern world. Communities that survived majestically the most extreme isolation during centuries and that nowadays in modern day globalization will disappear if nothing is done.