Directed by Irish filmmaker Nora Twomey, and based on a children’s novel by Deborah Ellis, The Breadwinner tells the story of an 11-year-old Afghan girl Parvana, born into an ever-changing world of conflict and Taliban oppression, who must disguise herself as a boy to become her family’s sole breadwinner. Flitting between a mythical past and a down-to-earth present, the story is full of scary monsters – from fantastical demons to all-too-real landmines and brutal beatings. Yet The Breadwinner looks through the eyes of a resilient young girl whose courage is our guide.
And while its message of female empowerment is wrought from a highly specific time and context, it goes without saying that it has much to say about the treatment of women from all walks of life.
“Raise your words, not your voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.” – Rumi
The Breadwinner is a richly animated jewel with a mix of 2D animation with acrylic and digitally painted environments as well as digital paper cut-out segments. It is thrillingly alive with the delicacy, artistry and wit of human touch.