An upbeat exploration of the dynamics of faith as a simple human experience, and how people turn to ritual and prayer to navigate the milestones and crises of life, from birth to death. From Semana Santa in Spain and an initiation ritual in Myanmar to a veneration of the dead in Madagascar, and from colorful customs and mass gatherings to individuals explaining their personal experience and interpretation in voice-over. A rare kaihogyo – a Buddhist monk’s thousand-day journey on foot around Mount Hiei – acts as a leitmotif that leads us along the path of life in three chapters: Initiation, Practice and Passage. Simple titles indicate which of the 25 countries the footage comes from, while the soundtrack adds to the enchantment. Oscar winner Thomas Lennon directed this worldwide collaboration between more than 40 filmmaking teams from his office in New York. There he crafted the footage into a global exploration of the role of prayer and ritual in daily life, at a time when religious hatred dominates the world’s headlines.
Thomas Lennon, Jessica Wolfson
THIRTEEN PRODUCTIONS LLC, Stephen Segaller for WNET, William Baker, Raita Nakashima, Atsushi Uchino
Maeve O'Boyle, Nick August-Perna