MOLOM, A LEGEND OF MONGOLIA
(Molom, Conte de Mongolie)
That said, a literalistic interpretation of mythic events might have made for a more interesting film than the one on display. In taking the mundane route, Molom, A Legend of Mongolia disappointingly falls into a certain category of arts film that seems to assume that filming the most routine day-to-day events in the life of other cultures without concern for drama or plot makes for significant cinema. And sadly most of the film doesnt.
It is only near the end that Molom momentarily rises out of mundanity. There is one conceptually dazzling burst of imagery that spectacularly contrasts the opposition between the mythic interpretation and mundane events the film has set up young Yonden, having foolishly killed a bird, walks away in remorse, haunted by Moloms words that its spirit will follow him for the rest of his life and then we see its shadow fall over him only we recognise the shadow as that of a hovering helicopter. Up until that point, the contemporary world has only hovered at the very periphery a pocket telescope, a home-made rifle and the film could otherwise be set in any period. Its shock arrival in this manner (not to mention its startling contrast of the mythic worldview and the mundane reality) has an effect not unakin to a classic science-fiction conceptual breakthrough. It also presages an abrupt shift from native to modern culture and the rest of the film chronicles the steady encroachment of civilisation depicted by the desolate and dreary surrounds of Ulan Bator and the seeming loss of the mythic worldview that living in modern society entails.
Marie Jaoul de Poncheville is an occasional actress. She has made two other works as director, both set around Central Asia, with the documentary Lung Ta: Forbidden Tibet (1990) and Tengri (2008) set among the nomads of Kyrgyzstan.
Film online in several parts beginning here:-