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Kundun - Movie Synopsis & Plot

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In 1937 a two-and-a-half year old boy from a simple family in Tibet was recognized as the 14th reincarnation of the Buddha of Compassion, and destined to become the spiritual and political leader of his people. Director Martin Scorsese brings to the screen the true story of the Dalai Lama. Told through the eyes of His Holiness, "Kundun" brings to life the account of the Dalai Lama's early life, from childhood through the Chinese invasion of Tibet and his journey into exile.

"Kundun" is a story of indomitable will and fervent religious commitment set against a spectacular physical backdrop and compelling world politics. It is the true story of Tenzin Gyatso, a boy from rural Tibet, destined to lead his people at one of the most challenging times in their history.

"Kundun" begins in 1937 with the recognition of a 2-year-old boy as the 14th Dalai Lama and ends with his exile in 1959, separated from his beloved homeland at the age of 24.

Through the eyes and heart of Tenzin Gyatso, as he grows from boy to man and is prepared for leadership by the most enlightened Buddhist scholars, "Kundun" reveals a society that remained isolated from the West for centuries.

In 1950, when Tenzin Gyatso was 15, the Chinese communist army of Chairman Mao Zedong entered Tibet, claiming it as part of China. The Dalai Lama's appeals to the West went unheeded and the young leader was left to stand alone. Throughout his long resistance, he refused to sacrifice his principles. He has stood fast to the basic Buddhist ideals of non-violence.

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