The Breadwinner (2017) Movie Script

Anything written,
anything read.
Pashto and Dari.
Beautiful items for sale.
Anything written, anything read.
Pashto and Dari.
Beautiful items for sale.
I saw you serve a woman!
I saw you with my own eyes!
- No, I... I... I didn't...
- You were! I saw you!
- Anything written,
anything read. Pashto and Dari.
Beautiful items for sale.
Parvana...'s the only thing of value
we have left.
I never wore it.
Not even once!
Where would you
wear it, Parvana?
Let's continue
your studies, all right?
- Yes, Baba.
- Now, what can you tell me
about the Silk Road?
The Silk Road...
Baba, I can't remember
about the Silk Road.
Maybe if we think of it
like a story, huh?
Stories remain in our hearts
even when all else is gone.
Our people have
always told stories
from our very beginning,
when we were Parthia
and Khurasan.
A fractured land
in the claws
of the Hindu Kush mountains,
scorched by the fiery eyes
of the northern deserts.
Black rubble earth
against ice peaks,
our land
was the petrified skeleton
of a monster.
We were Auriana,
the land of the noble
and honorable.
We were a pathway
to everywhere,
carrying goods
from east to west.
We studied the stars and began
to see order amidst the chaos.
We were scientists,
philosophers and storytellers.
Questions sought answers
and then more questions.
We began to see
our place in the universe,
but we were at the edges
of empires
at war with each other
as borders were defined
and redefined
over thousands of years.
Of these mighty rulers
came Cyrus the Great of Persia,
then Alexander the Great
of Macedon,
then came the Mauryan Empire,
Genghis Khan, and so on
and so on. Each time
there was bloodshed,
and each time
there were survivors.
The pattern
repeating itself endlessly.
When I was young, Parvana,
I knew
what peace felt like
here, in this city.
Children went to school,
women went to university;
all the empires
forgot about us...
for a while, at least.
But it did not last.
The ground became weak
under our feet,
always uncertain.
First came a coup d'tat,
then an invasion,
then a civil war.
In the chaos,
some looked to those
who might restore order...
but at a great cost.
We have determined
specific dignity for women!
Women should not go outside
and attract
unnecessary attention!
If a woman shows herself,
she will be cursed
by Islamic Sharia
and should never
expect to go to heaven.
Everything changes, Parvana.
Stories remind us of that.
Were you listening at all?
Yes, Baba.
Why don't you tell me
about our nomadic ancestors
and their hills of gold?
2,000 years ago...
2,000 years ago...
there was a Bactrian princess
who had a crown...
- And?
- And...
- Parvana?
- Away!
Keep away from my things!
Go away!
I said go away
you silly dog!
Hey! Hey, you!
What do you think you're doing?
Why is this girl shouting?
She is only a child.
She meant nothing by it.
She's drawing attention
to herself!
She should be at home,
not displaying herself
in the market.
- I have no son at home
except an infant. I need
my daughter to help me.
Stand up when we talk to you!
I said stand up.
I know you.
- Yes, Idrees.
I was your teacher once.
You were a good student.
You wasted my time,
teaching me things of no worth.
I have joined theTaliban
and now I fight
the enemies of Islam.
Well if I am an enemy,
then for my sins,
God has taken my leg.
Are you making fun of me,
old man?
I lost my leg in the war.
The war we fought together.
How old is the girl?
- Idrees...
- She is a child.
She's old enough to marry!
I'll be looking for a wife soon.
She's already been
promised to someone.
Well, she should
cover herself properly!
Maybe you should
stop looking at her.
- What did you say to me?
- I said, "Stop looking at her!"
- I can have you killed!
- Idrees...
- You watch what you say!
- That's enough! Come on!
Are you all right?
Yes, Baba.
That's my girl.
Let's go home now.
You told that boy
I was promised to someone.
Am I getting married?
Of course not!
You are still a child.
I want you playing
and telling stories.
I'm too old for that now.
Too old for stories?
You've always loved stories.
What's the use?
I'll have a word with Mama-jan
and we'll sort it all out.
Please don't
mention the dress.
...then I'll never
hear the end of it.
- The end of what?
- Nothing, Mama-jan.
We're not selling
Parvana's good dress!
Baba! That's not what I meant.
We need
the money, Baba.
Well, we'll hold off for a bit.
I think business will pick up.
If business picks up,
then we won't have to sell it.
Sure, when the sky
is fallen and the earth is hard.
We will have to sell it soon.
Well, what about
a little story
before dinner and we'll forget
all about dresses for a while?
Maybe Parvana would like
to read something for us.
Not right now, Mama-jan.
I'm tired.
- She's not a child anymore,
she tells me.
So, she doesn't like stories.
Don't be in such a hurry
to grow up, my sweet girl.
It might not be
all that you expect.
We're out of water. You didn't
bring enough this morning.
There's half a bucket
by the door!
When I was young enough
to fetch water,
the buckets were never empty.
- Hey!
- Girls, stop it!
- Either you go out
and get more water after dinner,
or you can wash
Zaki's dirty diapers.
How are you feeling?
now that you're here.
Maybe if you didn't wash
your hair so much, we wouldn't
run out so quickly, eh?
- Parvana...
You should
have some respect.
Why don't you eat?
Hm? Things always look better
when your belly is full.
- Yes, Mother.
Zaki! Zaki!
Wait 'til
I pull up your sleeves!
No, Mama-jan! No, Mama-jan!
There. There you go.
Don't eat all the
raisins, Parvana.
Leave them for Zaki.
- Why don't you give him
that big raisin
on your chin, Soraya?
Oh, but it's not a raisin.
It's a big, hairy mole.
Apologize to Soraya.
He's in there!
I saw him!
If there are women present...
- Baba?
...cover yourselves now!
That's the man!
An enemy of Islam!
He's got forbidden books and
he's teaching the women
with them!
Nurullah Alisai! You must
come with us quietly, or it will
be worse for you!
- You can't take him!
- Baba!
Where is he being taken?
To prison.
They'll teach him a good lesson
in Pul-e-Charkhi.
Can I light the lamp?
Hush, Parvana.
You'll wake Zaki.
But if they let Baba go,
he'll need the light
in the window to see home.
How could he come home?
He doesn't even have his stick
to walk with.
Now, go back to sleep.
It will be all right.
How do you know that,
Mama-jan? How do you know?
Be quiet, Parvana. She has
enough to worry about.
Hey! Zaki! Stop it!
Get up, Par vana.
Stop laying around.
- Why? What's going on?
You and I are going
to find Baba.
The boy said he was being taken
to Pul-e-Charkhi prison,
so that's where we are going.
We can't go outside
without Baba!
Soraya is writing a letter for
the prison governor to protest
Nurullah's arrest and ask
for his release.
At least
I can give them that.
Mama-jan, it's not allowed!
We might be all right
if we don't draw attention
to ourselves.
- But we can't...
Come on, Parvana. And bring
Baba's walking stick.
We have to get going.
Hey, you!
Salaam. Can you tell me
the way to Pul-e-Charkhi?
It's east. Past the river.
But it's a long way.
- Thank you, sir.
- Listen, go through
the old town
or you will be caught.
Why are you out here by
yourself? Where is your husband?
- I... I have no choice!
- It's not permitted to be
out here without your
husband or your brother.
I am sorry, I know...
- Do you understand?
- I am bringing a letter
protesting my husband's arrest...
- Just go home!
- No!
- What do you mean, "no"?
- This is Nurullah Alisai,
my husband. He was arrested
last night with no charges...
- Photographs are forbidden!
- What are you doing,
showing me a photograph?
Out here, by yourself?!
- There is no one in my house
except for children! I need to...
- You have no business out here!
Do you understand?
- ...find out about my husband!
Just go home! Immediately!
You're looking for trouble now!
You are insulting your husband!
You are an insult to your race!
I need to find out
what happened to him!
I need to find...
Going to the prison
will change nothing.
If you make trouble like this,
your husband will be punished
severely for your insolence.
And if I find you out here
again by yourself,
I will arrest you.
Now go.
Take me home.
Shh! Go get water, Parvana.
We have none left.
Come on!
What are you up to?!
Get out of here!
They'll see you!
Hey, stop!
Through here!
Where did that boy go?
Did you see? Did you see?!
Hey, you! Girl!
Hey! Come on!
- Forget about her!
Parvana, this is only
half a bucket.
Couldn't you fill them up
all the way?
- Mama-jan!
- Zaki! Shh!
- Don't wake her.
- Hush, Zaki!
- Soothe him, Parvana!
- Mama-jan...
- Tell him a story.
- Mama...
One time, in the distant past,
there was a little village
at the foot
of the Hindu Kush mountains.
- I want Mama-jan...
- Shh! Listen! The villagers
had just managed
to gather precious seeds
and so there was dancing
and singing and laughing
and eating.
Everyone was happy!
Especially for one boy
who danced and sang and laughed
and ate more than anyone else.
While the villagers
were dancing and singing
and laughing and eating,
monsters were coming.
The monsters
frightened the donkeys
and ate the trees.
They stole
the most precious thing
in the whole village,
the seeds for next year's crop.
And they ran back
to the Hindu Kush mountains
where their master lived,
the dreadful Elephant King
with spikes for tusks!
Ooh, Zaki! Ooh!
Please eat, Mama-jan.
You'll feel better
when your belly is full.
There's hardly any food left.
I'll go to the market.
- Salaam.
- Salaam. 12 oranges, please.
100 afghani.
Thank you.
Salaam. How much
for six apples, please?
Salaam, child.
I can't serve you.
But sir... can I
please have six apples?
Get your father
to buy food for you.
My father's been taken.
I'm sorry.
Maybe come back later.
- ...literally stolen.
- But, you know...
Salaam! Can I have
a kilo of rice, please?
- Hey, you!
Girl! Hey, stop!
Stop when I tell you!
I dropped the bag.
- Hush.
- I lost the money.
- Keep your head back.
- I can get the water, though.
Shh. Don't worry
about that now.
I saved you a piece of naan.
I'll heat it up for you
so it's nice and fresh.
All right?
What are we
going to do?
- I don't know.
- Maybe if I go out early,
before it's crowded?
- It won't work, Parvana.
Market sellers won't
risk getting in trouble
for serving you.
Mama-jan has cousins
in Mazar-e-Sharif.
I could write to them for help.
But we've never even met them.
How do you know they will help?
We need food now.
These were
your brothers' clothes.
They will be big,
but we can take them up a bit.
Do I look like a boy?
You look like Sulayman.
So much like him.
- Mama-jan.
He was such a good boy.
Not much older
than you are now...
It's all right, Mama-jan.
Parvana is going to the market
for food and water.
It's the only way, Mama-jan.
We have nothing left.
All these juices are warm!
I don't want warm juice...
Buy some bracelets!
That's what I said!
But you know...
- Salaam!
- What is this?
Salaam! Excuse me! Salaam!
Salaam! Salaam!
Come inside, boy!
I'm not going to deliver, am I?
But you know how it goes, right?
Well then, let's hear it!
I need a kilo of rice,
half kilo lentils
and a small amount of raisins.
A small amount?
Ha ha! Should I
go by my imagination?
- Yes.
- Not very bright,
this one! Ha ha ha ha!
Poor iron won't
make a sharp sword!
Ha ha ha ha!
Look at him smiling!
Ha ha ha ha ha!
Little guy doesn't even know
when he's being made fun of!
Thank you!
Thank you very, very much.
You're spilling the tea.
Oh. Sorry, Uncle.
- AH!
- Who are you and why were
you staring at me?
- I...
- What is your name?
- My name?
- I know you from somewhere!
- No! I wasn't...
- "Wasn't" what?
- I... you don't know me!
- I do know you.
- No!
- I do know you! You're Parvana!
- I'm not!
- I am Shauzia!
Remember? From school?
- I had long hair then,
but... so did you.
- Deliwar?
- Don't tell anyone.
Here's your cap.
You need to get a boy's name
so you don't hesitate
next time somebody asks you.
- Deliwar!
- I am Deliwar now.
It means brave.
- Where are you?
- I... I have to run.
It was good to see you!
Mama-jan, please sit down.
It will be curfew soon.
What if she's not back by then?
She's fine, I'm...
Who's hungry?!
Praise Allah!
He has returned you to me!
Mama-jan, you're
squashing the naan!
It smells delicious, Parvana.
It's me. See?
I bought them
especially for you.
If you run out and
get some water, he'll get used
to you by the time
you come back.
But I'm tired.
Hurry on, Parvana.
It's almost curfew.
You look so much like him.
Go change Sulayman's clothes
or you'll get them dirty.
They are already dirty.
He wants you to continue
your story about the elephant.
Well, um... the village,
under the Hindu Kush mountains,
the poor villagers
cried bitter tears.
They did not know
what they would do without
their precious bag of seeds.
They would have nothing to sow
come next spring,
and nothing to eat
come next winter.
But the boy, he did not
cry bitter tears.
He looked toward the mountain
and he shouted...
I am not afraid of you,
big, spiky, bad Elephant King!
maybe he was
a little bit afraid.
He told the villagers who had
been weeping bitter tears
that he would get the bag
of seeds back before spring.
I will get the bag of seeds
back before spring!
But they laughed!
They laughed and laughed
because he was a child
and not a great warrior. Yet
the boy repeated his promise.
I will I get
the bag of seeds
back before spring!
And he left the village to the
sound of the elephant king's
roars ahead of him.
Mama-jan! Now that I'm a boy,
we can go to the prison
and find Baba!
No, Parvana. We can't do that.
- Why not?
- Shh!
It's not that simple, Parvana.
But we have to try!
- There's nothing we can do.
- That's not true!
Stop it, Parvana!
You're upsetting her!
Hey! Hey! I told you to stop!
Why do you keep running?!
You should have stopped
when we told you!
Where is your burqa?
Why are you dressed
like this outside your house?
- My husband took my burqa!
I needed to buy medicine!
Why did your husband
not get it for you?
- Because she's a girl! My baby is a girl!
- He should be punished for
letting you outside like this!
- Please, please, please! No!
You have to take
the punishment!
Deliwar! DELIWAR!
Well, have you
remembered your name yet?
I don't think I can
go on like this.
Too bad. I could
use some help.
I saw something.
What do you want me to say?
- I should have helped.
- You'd have helped yourself
to a good whipping, that's all.
- But I'm not a boy!
- You're not a boy; you're not
a girl. Now, I need a helper
because this tray is too heavy.
Will you help?
Scratch my nose, quickly!
If I let go of the tray,
the strap will break!
That's better.
- Aatish.
- What?
I remembered my name.
It's Aatish.
- That's not really a name.
- It means fire.
I know what it means
but it's still not a name.
Then it suits me fine.
I'll call you Aatish then.
When you're a boy,
you can go anywhere you like,
Aatish Khan!
Where are we going?
You'll see.
What if someone sees us?
I usually just
pretend I work here.
If you look like you believe it,
then they will too.
See? We're cleaners.
What are you waiting for?
It's either ours
or the mice eat it.
I need to find
a way to see my baba.
You can have mine if you like.
I don't want him.
- My father was taken
to prison and we've
heard nothing of him since.
They won't let you
see him, Parvana.
- But I'm a boy now!
- It doesn't make a difference.
They'll keep him or let him go,
but there's nothing you can do
about it.
- You don't know that!
I'm sorry.
It's just the way it is.
There might be a way, but...
you'll need lots of money.
What for?
You can get a lot done
with bribes. A lot!
Anything written,
anything read.
Pashto and Dari.
Wonderful items for sale.
Anything written, anything read.
Anything written, anything read.
What happened to the man
who used to sit here?
It is a simple question.
Don't you know?
How should I know? Answer
the question. Where is he?
He left for Mazar-e-Sharif.
And what are you to him?
I'm his nephew.
- Do you know how to read?
- Do you have something to read?
I read Pashto and Dari.
- Read this.
Let's see if you're any good.
Come on. Take it
out of the envelope.
Dear Razaq...
Louder, or I will have
to take my business elsewhere!
Dear Razaq,
I hope this letter
reaches you in Kabul.
I'm writing to you
with sad news.
I am sorry to tell you
that Hala Begum died on the way
to her sister's wedding.
The bus she was traveling on
hit a land-mine.
Her injuries were
too great to bear
and she died
some hours afterward.
I know this must be
a great shock to you,
but please know
that when I last spoke to Hala,
she told me
of your kindness toward her.
May Allah bless you now,
guide your path
and give you courage.
I'm sorry.
Ah, there's
my sweet little girl!
Underneath all the dust
of Kabul.
what did you give Zaki?
- It's a piece of candy!
- A piece?!
It's big enough to choke him!
Let him be, Soraya.
You're spoiling his fun!
Continue the story,
Parvana, for Zaki.
There was this young boy and...
he promised his people
to find the precious seeds.
Elephant? Elephant?
Yes, and the elephant.
At night,
the boy walked
through the pine trees
on his way to the mountain
to face the elephant king.
Something was following him
in the darkness
but he was too terrified
to turn around and face it.
He began to run and the thing
that chased him also ran.
The boy ran faster
and so did his pursuer.
He ran into the night,
chased by the unknown demons
until he could run no more.
He tumbled down a hill.
Down and...
down and...
Dear Cousin,
it has been many years
since we have spoken
but I am writing to you now
to tell you that my husband
has been arrested
and we have no word
on when he will be released,
if at all.
My family is in
a desperate situation
and I need your help.
My eldest daughter is now
of age and I am asking
that you consider her as a bride
for your youngest son, Ajmal.
take us out of Kabul
so that we may
have a chance of survival.
We will not be a burden to you.
We are skilled and strong
and need little
by the way of means.
May the blessings ofAllah
be upon you,
Anything written,
anything read. Anything written,
anything read.
Anything written...
- How much for the dress?
- Salaam. It's handmade.
- How much?
- 3,000.
Don't be stupid.
I'll give you 300.
2,000. Handmade
in Mazar-e-Sharif.
Your daughter will be very happy
to wear such a beautiful dress!
She is my wife.
See how it sparkles?
Here's 1,000.
How much did you make?
- 1,000.
- That might be enough
for a good bribe.
- Really?
Definitely! I'm saving up too.
Whatever money I can hide
from my father I keep,
and it's mounting up
to a nice little sum.
I'm not going to stay here
forever, you know.
Have you ever been to the sea?
- No.
- Neither have I,
but I've heard
that the moon pulls
the water onto the shore
and then back out again.
I want to see that.
I want to put my feet
on the warm sand
and have them cooled
by the lapping water.
What about your father?
Doesn't he depend on you?
I am a good son...
but he is not a good father.
What will you do by the sea?
I'd... buy things
and sell things like I do here,
but for myself. There are people
who go to the edge of the water
to do nothing!
They just sit there
and they look at the sea
with their sunglasses on...
or swim about on floating tubes.
So I could sell them
those things.
That sounds nice, Deliwar.
Maybe I'll join you.
- Where are you going?
- Wish me luck.
Why are you back so early?
I brought some bread
and raisins for Zaki.
- What are you doing, Parvana?
- I'm going to find Baba.
- No, you're not.
- I'm going.
You won't make it home
before curfew!
I'm going! There's nothing
you can do to stop me!
Mama-jan has been
through enough
without you doing
something so stupid!
- I have to find him!
- Parvana! Parvana!
Excuse me?
Salaam? Hello?
Excuse me?
- Ah!
- I said, "What do you want?"
- I want to see my father.
- Who?
My father, Nurullah Alisai,
brought here two weeks ago
without charge.
- Get out of here!
- I have money!
1,000 afghani.
I can give it to you
if you promise to help!
- Hey! What are you doing?
Nothing. Just getting rid
of a kid.
Please! Open up!
I have to see my father!
I have to see him! AHH!
Now get out of here
unless you want some more!
They say
it doesn't always rain
the way it thunders.
Last we heard of him,
the boy had fallen down.
He had fallen down the hill
and into the deepest of sleeps.
But all was not lost.
He was discovered
by an old woman.
She had a drum.
A magic drum
that beat so beautifully
that his heart woke up.
She knew he must be on a quest
and so she asked him,
What is it you seek?
Well you see,
the dreadful Elephant King
sent his jaguars to steal the...
No one has ever
overcome the Elephant King!
I know.
What makes you think you can?
I need to.
I just need to. That's all.
That's not a very good answer.
the woman told him
he'd need to find three things:
something that shines,
something that ensnares,
and something that soothes.
Only then would he overcome
the Elephant King.
- Give them to me!
- I don't have them.
So you better go look for them.
And hurry! If the seeds
are not planted soon,
there will be no harvest!
- Yes, I know.
- She told him to head east.
East is the other way.
Still something
followed the boy.
And still,
he could not face it.
He didn't take the money?
I don't think bribes work on them.
No, no.
It probably wasn't enough.
It might have insulted him.
You'll just have to save up more
and be even smarter next time.
- I have to be smarter?
I've heard there is a guy
who pays well for small jobs.
Come on!
Sir, we have come to work.
And you are?
I'm Deliwar and this
is Aatish. We are brothers.
What kind of a name is Aatish?
- I don't know. Ask our father.
- Where is your father?
He was martyred
by the Russians.
We can do any job you want!
For the right price.
- That's the last one, I think.
- Where are we, anyway?
About time! You boys
are not very strong.
It was more work
than you said.
Here you are. Now be off.
Hey, we did
all that you asked!
Wait! You said
you'd drive us back!
I'm not a taxi!
Make your own way home.
I'm late already
because you took so long
to load the truck!
- Wait!
I need to rest a moment.
Stay on the path.
This place might be mined.
This is not nearly enough.
We need better jobs.
- Like what?
I heard brickmaking pays well,
but it's hard work.
I wish I was stronger.
But you have an older brother,
don't you?
He used to bring you
to school on his shoulders.
What's his name?
He died.
How? Was it a sickness?
- I don't know.
- But your mother
must have told you.
- She doesn't speak of it,
all right?
All right.
Hey, look what I've got!
I found it in a little box where
my father keeps his things.
Can you believe
the water is that blue?
It's very nice.
Anything written,
anything read.
Anything written,
Anything written, anything read.
I didn't pay you last time.
How much do I owe you?
- It's OK, I...
- What, you don't charge
for bad news?
Who taught you to read?
The cripple teacher?
Yes. My uncle.
Can you write
as good as you read?
I can.
I kept this in case
you wanted it.
Show me.
Show me where it says her name.
Where it says Hala.
Do you know what it means?
Sometimes, on a clear night
when you look at the moon,
you can see
a bright outline around it.
That outline is called hala.
My wife was named
for that light.
- This is too much.
- Don't argue with me.
Thank you.
Pull my sister's hair.
I pull my sister's...
- Stop it, Zaki.
Can I pull yours?
- Keep him quiet.
I am trying to sleep.
What's the matter with you?
Why don't you
tell Zaki a story?
Hm? We'd all like that.
Well Zaki, do you want to know
what happened to the boy?
- Elephant?
- Yes, yes.
And the elephant.
The boy ran and ran,
his heart beating fast in fear
and the thing that chased him...
- AH!
- ...never stopped.
So the boy hid behind the tree
and he waited for courage.
An ancient woman
had been trying to milk a goat
but her back was very sore.
My back
is very sore!
The boy took pity on her
and told her to rest
under the shade of a tree and
he would do the milking instead.
Please, sit under the shade
of this tree
and I will
do the milking instead.
When he finished
milking the goat,
the old woman shared the lovely,
warm milk with him.
It was the nicest milk
he had ever tasted,
and he complimented the woman
on her goats!
Your goats are very generous!
In return, the old woman
gave him a mirror.
See how it shines!
The boy was delighted
with the mirror
but as he looked into it,
he saw the reflection of the
thing that followed him.
What are you doing, Mama-jan?
I'm laying out
Soraya's good clothes.
Am I to sell them
at the market?
Shh. Sh, sh, sh.
Parvana, it's time to sleep.
I just need to find a way
to get to Peshawar
and I can figure it out
from there.
I think there's a beach in Goa
where the tourists
are very rich.
If they're rich,
they will buy my blue stones
and that's where I'd
set up my business and...
you could join me!
Once I find Baba.
Once you find your baba.
- 100.
- I'll give you 85.
- 90!
- 82.
85 and that's final.
85 and a bunch of grapes
and that's final.
You're leaning too hard
on the pen,
but your writing is good.
If you try it more gently,
it'll be easier.
Wait! Wait a moment!
What is it, child?
You asked me before
about the man
who used to sit there,
the teacher.
- Your uncle?
- He didn't go
to Mazar-e-Sharif.
He was taken to prison...
but he did nothing wrong!
- Which one?
- What?
- Which prison?
- Pul-e-Charkhi.
It's been weeks now
and my family has
had no word of him.
Go to the prison on Wednesday.
Ask for Roshaan.
He is my cousin.
Tell him Razaq sent you
and he will help you...
if he can.
With work like this,
I'll be an old woman
by the time I get to the sea.
Or an old man.
You sit and rest, Deliwar,
and I'll tell you a story.
- A story?
- Yes, a story.
One time, in the deep past,
there was a boy
who had to return a stolen bag
of precious seeds
to his village.
Is it a happy story
or a sad story?
Just wait and see.
The boy had been told
he needed three things in order
to overcome the Elephant King.
Something that shines,
something that ensnares,
and something that...
Hey! You two! Come here!
Come on!
I know that boy.
Hurry and come here!
Come on!
We'd better do
what we're told.
Get a move on, lazy kids!
So these are the new workers.
Where are your tongues?
Are you stupid?
- Idrees suggested we have
a little arm wrestling match...
to see if you are strong enough
to work for me.
I saw you sitting down
over there instead of working.
Idrees, stop now.
Make me some tea.
Let me see how feeble you are,
little one!
He can't even lift his hands!
Get up and make us tea.
I think you need new workers.
These ones are no good.
Enough, Idrees.
Leave the poor kids alone.
They are a little undercooked.
I know you.
You're the teacher's daughter.
- Idrees!
Bring the gun back! I said,
bring the gun back! IDREES!
Idrees! It has begun!
We are moving west!
We have been given orders
to go immediately!
I know who you are!
- Idrees!
- Do you hear?
Get up here!
Come on!
Right now, you little coward!
You want to fight?
Now is your chance to fight!
You'll become a man.
He's gone.
What if he comes back?
He'd be lucky.
Where are we?
I came here once
when I ran away.
I think the way in
has gotten smaller
or I have gotten bigger.
It looks old.
I lost a shoe.
I lost my cap...
although I think it's outside.
Why did you hit him?
When they took my father,
he was one of them.
Tell me more about the boy.
- What boy?
- The story boy.
The boy was cold.
Though the sun
burned in the sky,
it gave no heat.
But he had a warm hat
and a big coat.
- Oh!
- No, he didn't!
He had already found
one of the three things,
a mirror that shone.
But when he looked at it,
he saw something behind him.
Something scary!
Something dreadful!
- A horse!
- No, Shauzia! Not a horse.
Yes, it was!
And it was a very old horse
whose bones clattered together
when it walked.
It wasn't scary at all!
The boy felt sad
for the old horse
and fed him hay, and...
- And they all lived happily
ever after!
- It's the middle of the story,
not the end! From a door
carved into the stone,
out came a round man.
You wasted my hay
on an old horse
that will soon be dead!
- The round man threw the boy
deep into the belly of an
ancient well.
At the bottom of the well,
there were emeralds
and the round man wanted them
brought up to him
as payment for the wasted hay.
- You will bring
the emeralds to me!
What's his name?
- The round man?
- No, the boy.
You can't have a story
about a boy
and not give him a name.
Give him a name before I do!
Sulayman. His name is Sulayman.
That's a good name.
Sulayman lay at the bottom
of the well.
he could see skeletons.
Three skeletons,
each with an emerald
clutched in its bony hands.
He called out for help.
- The poor, old horse
looked back at him
from way above.
But the horse
did something extraordinary!
He neighed with the voice
of all the world's animals.
Sulayman climbed up, up,
all the way to the top
and he thanked the horse
for saving his life.
Thank you for saving my life!
Sulayman had just
three emeralds with him
and he asked the round man
for food in return.
He was hungry.
But the round man
was wicked and cheap.
He threw a fishing net
at Sulayman
and he told him
to get his own food.
That was exactly
what Sulayman needed...
- Ha ha!
- ...something that ensnares.
But as Sulayman left,
the ghosts
of the three skeletons
came out of the three emeralds
and swirled and twirled
and scared the round man
in frightful vengeance for
having lost them their lives.
Sulayman and the horse
continued their journey
toward the mountain,
but the horse was getting
slower and slower.
He needed to rest,
being very, very old.
And so Sulayman made a shelter
for the horse and told him
to wait for him.
The horse protested,
but Sulayman knew
he had to face the Elephant King
and the jaguars all by himself.
- I will see you again,
old horse.
And so on he went alone.
Tomorrow isWednesday.
I'm going back there...
to the prison.
They'll have to let me
see him then.
From now on,
you're staying inside.
It's much too dangerous.
No, Mama-jan.
We manage all right out there.
Me and Deliwar.
She's a girl too.
- We work together.
- We've written to my cousin
to arrange a marriage
for your sister in Mazar.
They wrote back and it was
accepted. Someone will come
for us the day after tomorrow
to take us away.
You don't need to do this anymore!
- What?!
We can't go on like this!
We can't depend on you
to keep us alive!
Why? I provide
for you just fine!
It's not the job of a child!
How can we leave
without Baba?!
Every day, you come home
with cuts and blisters.
Every day, you go out there
and I don't know
if I'll see you back again!
I can't lose you too.
I'm not going.
Baba could come back and no one
will be here waiting for him.
So how long should we wait?
Until you're found out
and taken away from me?
Until I have to send Zaki
out to earn our keep?
Let me go see him before
we leave.
Let me tell him where we are going!
- Parvana!
Let me bring him
his walking stick.
Then I will go with you!
Then I will be a good sister
and a good daughter. I promise.
I promise.
Please don't go. Please.
It is much too dangerous now.
- Mama-jan...
I'm going. I'll be back tonight
before curfew.
- No, Sulayman!
- Mama-jan...
- You won't come back.
- Let her go now.
Let Parvana go.
Oh! Give a kiss!
You frightened me
half to death!
I've been looking
for you everywhere.
Why? You want to work at the
chai shop with me this morning?
- No, I can't.
- Hey,
you want some candy for Zaki?
We are leaving Kabul tomorrow.
You're leaving me?
It's been arranged.
There's nothing I can do.
My sister is getting married in
I'm going back to the prison.
I found someone who can help me
and I need to get more money
to bribe the guard.
I'll need it today!
You'll just get
another punch in the guts.
It's a stupid idea.
I won't let that happen
this time!
- I said, It's a stupid idea.
- Please, help me!
- What do you want me to do?
Magic some money into your hand
like in your kid stories?
It doesn't work
like that, Parvana!
I can't help you.
Now run away to Mazar-e-Sharif
and have a nice wedding party.
Maybe they'll find a husband
for you too and your troubles
will be over...
until after the wedding,
at least. You fool!
Shauzia... come with us.
I can't.
My father will come
all the way to Mazar to kill me
I can't leave Kabul, Parvana.
Not like this.
Here. Take this.
- I can't take your money!
Please, take it.
Go and see your baba.
Tell him that his daughter
is a good daughter.
Tell him that...
Deliwar said so.
Hey, Deliwar!
I'll meet you at that beach
you were talking about,
where the moon pulls the water!
20 years from today.
I don't think I'll
recognize you then, Aatish.
Well, you can sell me
some pretty blue stones
for a great price.
Until next time, then.
Until next time.
- Peace be upon you.
Are you Fattema?
- Yes, I am Fattema.
- I am your second cousin.
Mohamed Abdul sent me
from Mazar.
Gather your family.
We must leave immediately.
No. You see, you weren't
supposed to come so soon.
My son is away, we must wait
for him to return.
- There is a war coming!
Have you not heard?
We have to leave now, before they
block the roads!
We have to wait until
she comes home!
I have to wait for my daughter!
Son, daughter!
Which is it? Gather your things,
we are leaving now!
- I am not leaving
without Parvana!
We have to wait!
Count yourself lucky
I am taking you, old woman.
The girl and the baby
are of more worth.
I didn't come all this way
for nothing!
If we do not go now, we won't
get out of here at all!
- Give me my baby!
- Let go!
- Give him to me! Please! Zaki!
Zaki! Give me my baby!
- Let go! Let go!
- Salaam, little one.
- Salaam.
Where are you going to
with an old man's stick?
It belongs to my baba.
I'm taking it to him...
to the prison.
I see.
We are going that way.
- Give the baby to me!
- Let go!
Let go! If you want to keep
the baby, come with me!
Ah, Zaki, you... my daughter
is out there!
Then what kind of fool are you
to have sent her out alone?
Get in, or she won't be
the only child you lose today!
No, don't! Give me my baby!
Keep him quiet!
Zaki! Wait for my daughter!
Come, Soraya.
We must start a fire.
I am looking for Roshaan! Hey!
I am looking for Roshaan!
I am looking for Roshaan!
I am looking for Roshaan!
I am looking for Roshaan!
Open the door!
Get away from the door,
you stupid kid!
- I am looking for Roshaan!
- Get out of here!
- I am looking for Roshaan!
- Are you stupid? Shut up!
- What are you doing here?
It's all right.
He is my son.
You are wanted inside.
That boy needs
some discipline.
That's my business.
What in the name
of the merciful
are you doing here?!
It's Wednesday!
I've come to meet
your cousin, Roshaan.
There's a war started!
Roshaan has gone to fight.
We've been brought from the city
to clear the prison of anyone
who won't fight for us.
The teacher...
- Is he alive?
- I don't know.
- The teacher is my father.
I am Parvana, his daughter.
Help him.
If I'm not back before
the sun has gone down, you run.
Run as far away as you can from
here and you keep on running.
You can't stay here after
sunset, do you understand?
Thank you.
- Do you understand?
- Yes.
Hide yourself until then.
Once, there was a young boy...
called Sulayman.
He knew his heart
was fated to serve his people
and he was running out of time.
Thank you. Thank you so much.
Come on. Get in the car.
We have to go
back for my daughter.
I said, Come here! Now!
We're not going with you.
- Mama-jan!
- You!
Come now! Do you hear me?
You come here
like I told you to!
You come now!
We will not go with you.
Just drive away from us!
Get in the car.
Get in the car, now!
Sulayman! Sulayman!
Be brave, Sulayman!
Run, Soraya!
- Take Zaki and run! Now!
- Mama!
GO! Keep running!
You... let... us... go.
Open the door.
- What are you doing with that?
- He's dead. I'm putting him
with the others. Open the door.
Let me through.
Move, move, move,
move, move, move!
- Stop!
- Get in a lineup, all of you!
I said, stop!
It will be dark soon.
Razaq! Razaq!
Sulayman... Sulayman!
The mirror shines!
Use it to blind the jaguars!
And then the snares!
Throw it over them!
Razaq! Razaq! Razaq!
I have come for my father!
I have come for my baba!
Put him down!
I said, put him down!
Do you see what is happening?
Where are you taking him?
Who's out there?
Look away, can't you?
It is just one man.
What does it matter?
Go, unless you're going to kill me!
I will scream and curse you
until the last breath
leaves my body.
You're crazy.
You can die out here
for all I care!
I have not come to kill you!
Soothe him with your story!
The one that Mama-jan
can't speak of! Tell him!
- My name is Sulayman!
- Tell him what happened!
Tell him your story!
My name is Sulayman!
My mother is a writer.
My father is a teacher.
And my sisters
always fight each other.
One day, I found a toy
on the street.
I picked it up. It exploded.
I don't remember
what happened after that...
because it was the end.
- It's working, Sulayman!
Tell him! Tell him!
My name is Sulayman!
My mother is a writer.
My father is a teacher.
And my sisters
always fight each other.
One day, I found a toy
on the street. I picked it up.
It exploded!
It was the end.
My name is Sulayman.
My mother is a writer.
One day, I found a toy
on the street.
My father is a teacher.
I picked it up.
And my sisters
always fight each other.
It exploded.
One day, I found a toy
on the street.
I don't remember
what happened after that.
I picked it up.
Because it was the end.
The elephant was transformed!
He took the bag of seeds
from the centre of the mountain
and gave it back to Sulayman!
Sulayman returned
to his village.
There was much dancing.
And singing. And laughing.
And eating.
Baba! Baba!
Is he alive?
It is not his blood.
He lives.
Get out of here now, child.
Go on!
As fast as you can.
It's the moon.
S... Sora... SORAYA!
- Mama?
- Soraya!
Soraya... Zaki...
We are a land
whose people
are its greatest treasure.
We are at the edges of empires
at war with each other.
We are a fractured land
in the claws
of the Hindu Kush mountains,
scorched by the fiery eyes
of the northern deserts.
Black rubble earth
against ice peaks.
We are... Auriana,
the land of the noble.
Raise your hearts,
not your voice.
It is rain that makes the
flowers grow.
Not thunder.
SETTE inc.