The rugged, bare and beautiful mountains of the Pakistani-Indian border are the setting for Mehreen Jabbar's slow but pretty Ramchand Pakistani, a tale of an accidental border crossing with tragic consequences.
Set among the Hindu minority in Pakistan's border region, it's the story of Ramchand, a free-spirited village boy who one day, during heightened tensions between the two countries, wanders into Indian territory. He is nabbed by two thuggish Indian soldiers. And before they can spirit him away, his father, who's looking for him, is grabbed to. They instantly disappear into India's prison bureaucracy.
Meanwhile, Ramchand's mother (Nandita Das) has only vague clues about what's happened to her son and husband. She tries to stay behind when their village is evacuated, but as years pass, she loses hope and Ramchand grows up as both a ward of the Indian state (he is schooled) and a prison inmate.
The novel setting is the best reason to see this "adapted from actual events" film, a drama that doesn't make the most of its dramatic, potentially heart-rending situations.
Screening at: 7 p.m. Saturday, April 4, Regal; 1 p.m. Sunday, April 5, Regal.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times