This meditative film about the inner struggle of a young Buddhist monk is a real gem from Sri Lanka. The monk arrives at a temple to restore its paintings. The paintings depict a moral story where Buddha said that a man with a target in life must not be swayed by passion and especially not by beautiful women.
These ancient, very exciting paintings consist of voluptuous half-naked women and men enjoying life in celebrations, dance and embraces. While working on the paintings a young woman attracts the young monk's attention and he develops sensual feelings towards her. The young monk’s inner spiritual world plunges into turmoil when he realises that he is trapped in a web of his worldly desires and attachments - just as is depicted in the paintings. This struggle will have surprising consequences. The monk, appearing as a very calm man, wrestles with his alter ego and is bursting inside with doubt and pain.
The first-time director, Prasanna Jayakody, came up with a wonderful solution to engage two actors for the different psychological inner being of the monk. Sankara (introspection) takes us on a spiritual journey, guided by excellent photography that captures the beautiful nature and significant details in a very meditative way, while the soundtrack very appropriately conveys the longing and danger when the young monk is lured away from the straight and narrow path. (RS)

Filmmaker
Prasanna Jayakody
Premiere
European premiere
Country
Sri Lanka
Year
2006
Medium
35mm
Length
87’
Language
Sinhalese (Sinhala)
Producer
Somaratne Dissanayake, Renuka Balasooriya
Production Company
Cine-Filmslanka
Sales
Cine-Filmslanka
Writer
Prasanna Jayakody
Cinematography
Palitha Perera
Editor
Ravindra Guruge
Production Design
Sunil Wijerathne
Sound Design
Kalinga Gihan Perera
Music
Nadeeka Guruge
Cast
Thumindhu Dodantenna, Sanchini Ayendra