For six months out of the year, thousands of Tibetan nuns of all ages hike up to the Yarchen Monastery, over 4,000 meters above sea level. As they develop severe cold-borne illnesses while each dwelling in small portable wooden houses that are flooded often with snow, the nuns diligently practice their sutras in their relentless pursuit of enlightenment, healing, and faith. Every now and then, these nuns will even stray from their path and wonder how they can restore karma and redeem themselves.
DARK RED FOREST is an exceptionally intimate portrayal of the lives and experiences of these women, a rare and lengthy glimpse into a community that is often politically shrouded and even “left behind” in a rapidly contemporizing China. This documentary goes beyond the scope of portraiture and explores the physical and mental struggles of the nuns as they postulate their circumstances through a recitation of Buddhist philosophy combined with collective resolve. Whether you are spiritually inclined or simply curious, this film offers a portal into a world of people who strive for and yet still stumble on their road to karmic glory.