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Science in Troubled Waters

Intricately weaving contemporary issues with traditional culture and ancient myths, Valley of Saints is a vibrant, lyrical film about finding one's path home in a changing world.

Widely considered to be the crown jewel of Kashmir, Dal Lake is a sprawling aquatic community where erupting political violence often distracts from the natural beauty.

The film centers on the relationship between Gulzar, a young, working-class boatman, and a scientist named Asifa.
Photo by Yoni Brook

Lush cinematography heightens the region’s visual splendor in this enlightening feature debut from Musa Syeed.
Photo by Yoni Brook

Valley of Saints was the winner of the 2012 Alfred P. Sloan Foundation feature film prize at Sundance. Set on beautiful Dal Lake in the troubled region of Kashmir. Shot on location with local talent in the midst of a military curfew, the film inspires a follow-up discussion of how scientific insight can have a profound impact on vital ecosystems, and even help heal long-simmering conflict zones.

This program is supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and part of its Public Understanding of Science and Technology initiatives.  Presented in collaboration with the Museum of the Moving Image.

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