Through 5 documentary shorts we get an understanding of how 5 children grow up in 5 different countries along the ancient silk route. Each story is told through the child’s perspective. Each little individual fate and life has something to overcome.
The Silk Road was an ancient network of trade routes that were central to cultural interaction connecting the East and West. It created curiosity among cultures, for example with tea and silk from China suddenly sold in Venice. The trading may be a thing of the past, but the culture is still there… We chose the Silk Road because we want to show the kids how colorful the world is and to create understanding and curiosity of the different cultures. What if we all had less prejudice and more curiosity? Would the world be more colorful and less hierarchical? Would there be more empathy? Could we in the West try to learn from other cultures?
Example of the first stories;
- A 14-year-old girl Poonam from NEPAL who is both excited about her early marriage but also scared about the wedding night and whether or not that she can stay in school with her girlfriends after the wedding.
- A 12-year-old boy Daniar from KYRGYZSTAN who succeeds in taming a wild horse, but his father is ultimately forced to put it down. We follow his fight for the horse and his way of dealing with his loss when the horse is put down.
- A 13-year-old boy Ravi from INDIA fighting his stubborn family for his musical dream.
- An 11-year-old girl Erdenchimeg from MONGOLIA, who despite alcohol and imprisonment in her family fights to overcome these obstacles to become a great contortionist.
- An 11-year-old boy Javed from BANGLADESH, recently moved away from beatings at school and at home and now living and working at a beach. Still searching a brighter future, he almost wins a surf contest, and with help from a friend he realizes that he needs to go back to school and surf in his spare time.
Common to all these stories is the way the children show courage by acting according to their beliefs and their hearts. They may not always be rewarded, as in life you do not always succeed. But we get an intimate look into the way these children grow up, deal with problems, and get a glimpse into the world of the grown ups.
Whether the children succeed in life or not is all a matter of perspective.