Skateistan: Four Wheels and a Board in Kabul

    • Kai Sehr
    • Afghanistan, Germany, United States
    • 2011
    • 95 min
    • Dutch Premiere
    • Best of Fests
    Australian relief workers discover that they can get street kids in Kabul interested in skateboarding, and they find that it's a great way to make contact with the locals. They transform the basin of a nonfunctioning fountain into an improvised skate ramp, and a much-loved hangout in Kabul is born. Dusty slippers are replaced with hip skate sneakers. Enthusiastic boys and girls - many of the latter clad in traditional dress and headscarf - glide on their boards through the fountain and over the streets of Kabul. But the initiators of these activities are confronted with new problems time and time again: the children's violent behavior, the differences between the sexes, the unwillingness of wealthy children to mix with poorer kids, and the tensions between the various ethnic groups. The success of the skate fountain sparks plans to build a big skateboard park with an adjacent skate school: Skateistan, and the search for funding alternates with scenes of daily life on the streets of Kabul. This is a moving, joyful, and hopeful film about idealism and children in wartime getting the chance to be kids again. The skaters even manage to get kids from the street and girls who have been forced to work back into school. "Anybody is cool on a skateboard."

    Credits

    • 95 min
    • color
    • video
    • Spoken languages: Afghan, English, German
    • Subtitles in: English
    Director
    Kai Sehr
    Production
    Rene Kock for Features while-u-wait LLC
    Executive producer
    Ken Meyer for Defilm
    Co-production
    DEFILM Ltd.
    Cinematography
    Ralf K. Dobrick

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