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All aboard the bus to Kathmandu! As if the mountain terrain weren’t challenging enough, our bus is repeatedly stopped by bandhs—spontaneous civil disobedience blockades—a frequent phenomenon since the end of the civil war. Meanwhile, a young woman can’t decide between her boyfriend and the fiancé arriving to marry her; a gay man hopes to reunite with his estranged lover; a soldier rushes to his wife in time to try out a fertility potion he’s swallowed (not knowing she’s kept some secrets from him); and the bus driver knows the woman he loves may be forced back into prostitution if he doesn’t show up with money for her sick child. Deepak Rauniyar’s debut feature has provoked a tumultuous response from Nepali audiences with its realistic characters and their taboo-shrouded issues. Rendered in an improvised cinematic style that heightens an already wild ride, HIGHWAY हाइवे is being called the harbinger of a new era in Nepali filmmaking.
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