Kimff turns 21

The Kathmandu International Mountain Film Festival (Kimff) returns to town with films and documentaries on mountain adventure, livelihood and climate change

KIMFF 2024 is once again set to gather Nepali and international filmmakers, aficionados, scholars and mountaineers in a celebration of visual storytelling.

Given dire warnings of how climate breakdown is affecting the ice caps on the world’s mountains, this year’s festival offers a new sense of urgency under the theme ‘Echoes of Change’.

The festival from 29 May-2 June will take place at the Rastriya Sabha Griha and Nepal Tourism Board, featuring over 60 documentaries, fiction, features, and short films from 22 countries, including Nepal, Bhutan, India, Iran, South Korea, Colombia, and Tunisia. The festival’s Nepal Panorama section will showcase almost 30 films about contemporary Nepal by local filmmakers, the largest number Kimff has featured yet.

“Kimff’s objective has always been to provide a platform for local stories and talent,” explains festival director Ramyata Limbu. “We hope the filmmakers and audiences will appreciate and enjoy this.” 

Kimff 2024 will kick off with the Asia Premiere of Italian director Brando Quilici’s The Tiger’s Nest. Filmed on location in Nepal, it follows a young boy embarking on a dangerous cross-country adventure to save a tiger’s cub from poachers.

“Hopefully, films like these will open up the space for and spark conversations about more co-productions and collaborations in Nepal,” adds Limbu.

The closing documentary on 2 June is No Monastery No Village about mountain people fighting to preserve their community and cultural heritage from a climate-induced disaster.

The international jury includes director/producer Dina Mufti from the UK, Nepali anthropologist Suresh Dhakal, and film editor Regina Baertschi from Switzerland.  They will pick winners from three shortlisted international feature films, 11 feature documentaries, and 16 fiction films for the Nepal Panorama section, among others.

Kimff will also celebrate a century since pioneering attempts on Everest with a film screening and a photo exhibition titled Everest Revisited 1924-2024. It will also mark half a decade of bilateral ties between Nepal and South Korea with the screening of films from Korea’s Ulsan Ulju Mountain Film Festival.

This year’s line-up will also include a panel discussion on Women Behind the Camera, screenings and an interactive session titled Championing Young Filmmakers, and a Nepali documentary pitch session by the forum Cut.Katha. Participants can also participate in an editing masterclass with Regina Baertschi.

Kimff 2024 is co-hosted by Kathmandu Metropolitan City and promoted by Nepal Tourism Board with support from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, the British Council, US Embassy, Film Development Board, Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA), Mila Productions, Pasang Lhamu Foundation, Daya Foundation, Voices of Women Media (VOW), Contemporary Art of Nepal Foundation, Toni Hagen Foundation, Bagmati Communications Registrar, Himalaya International Mountain Film of China (HIMF), GIZ, WWF, ICIMOD, North Face Nepal, and Sonam.   


The Tiger’s Nest

94 min | Italy/Nepal | 2022

Original Language: English

Director: Brando Quilici                          

Kimff 2024 NT

This opening film is the story of a young orphan named Balmani, who has grown up hearing about the legend of a guru who once flew through the Himalaya on the back of a female tiger. Where he landed, a cave on a sheer cliff, now stands a monastery called The Tiger’s Nest. One night, Balmani saves a tiger cub from the clutches of evil poachers and makes for the Tiger’s Nest, which he believes will be a safe haven. With the smugglers in hot pursuit, the boy and cub travel from the lush grasslands of central Nepal, through the chaos of Kathmandu, and into the high Himalaya, forming an unbreakable bond along the way.

Andro Dreams

63 min | India | 2023

Original Language: Manipuri

Director: Meena Longjam

Kimff 2024 NT

This is the story of a love affair between the spirited Laibi and her all girls' football club in a village in rural northeast India. Laibi’s club battles economic challenges, the patriarchy, and orthodoxy. Andro Dreams was the opening film for the non-feature section at the International Film Festival of India 2023.

कुलैं तौल कुछ नि जमदु (Nothing Grows Under The Pine Trees)

32 min | India | 2023    

Original Language: Garhwali

Director: Sachin Rana 

Kimff 2024 NT

In the hills of India’s Uttarakhand state live two sisters. The elder is pragmatic while the younger one is given to flights of fancy. When their parents deem that their firstborn daughter has crossed a line that would make her an outcast in society, they begin to make arrangements for her marriage. Her younger sister mistakenly comes to believe that she is the one whose wedding is planned. Nothing Grows Under The Pine Trees is the saga of a people who disguise their prejudice as tradition.

Climbing For Gold

22 min | Belgium/ United States | 2024

Original Language: Dutch/ English

Director: Vincent Groos          

Kimff 2024 NT

Vincent Groos’ documentary follows paraclimber Fré Leys as he trains for and competes in the 2023 Paraclimbing World Championships in Salt Lake City. Climbing for Gold explores Leys’ unrelenting training regimen, the bureaucracy of sports, and his competitors. It is a celebration of hard work, determination, and the human spirit.

My Radio My Life

68 min | India | 2023

Original Language: English/ Hindi/ Marathi

Directors: Bidit Roy, Makarand Waikar 

Kimff 2024 NT

Set in the 21st century, the film revisits the golden era of radio in India through people whose lives were shaped by the medium. Some of the cast of characters include a former announcer for Voice of America who broadcasted the Apollo 11 moon landing; a woman who found her calling, and later a life partner, through radio; an octogenarian who is determined to bring his treasured valve radio set back to life; a man who restores radios and displays them in his museum; and a woman who overcomes her conservative family through her passion for HAM radio.

A Childless Village

82 min | Iran | 2022                                                                      

Original Language: Azerbaijani

Director: Reza Jamali

Kimff 2024 NT

Two decades ago, an elderly filmmaker named Kazem made a documentary about women in a remote Azeri village, all of whom are childless. The women stole and burned the footage, but 20 years later, it emerges that it is actually the men in the village who are infertile. Determined to complete his project this time, Kazem heads back to ask new questions.

The Whispers of a Qareen

15 min | India | 2024

Original Language: Hindi

Director: Maaria Sayed

Kimff 2024 NT

12-year-old Jahaan is visited by something strangely familiar in her Himalayan village. Her new companion gradually reveals its true identity. As the days blur, games played in wild playgrounds and trivial gossip passed back and forth among friends in the shadow of the holy tree near her home begin to feel distant. It is almost as if the world around her is disappearing.


18 min | Nepal | 2023   

Original Language: Nepali

Director: Safal Pandey

Kimff 2024 NT

As a single father, Gokul’s world tilts on its axis when one day, he sees his son dance in a feminine manner in public. Gokul then commits to changing how his child conducts himself in order to protect his reputation in his community. In the process, Gokul learns more about the different facets of his son’s personality.

No Monastery No Village

27 min | Nepal | 2024   

Original Language: Tibetan

Director: Tashi Lhazom

Kimff 2024 NT

Nestled in the shadow of a glacial lake in the Himalaya lies Halzi village, home to the ancient Halzi Rinchenling Monastery, the cornerstone of Humla’s cultural heritage for centuries. It now faces a growing threat from a glacial lake upstream. A poignant exploration of faith, resilience and the fight to preserve a way of life in the face of climate change, the documentary follows villagers caught between deep devotion to their heritage and impending disaster.

Kimff 2024 NT

21st Kathmandu International Mountain Film Festival

Rastriya Sabha Griha and Nepal Tourism Board,

Pradarsani Marga, Kathmandu

29 May-2 June 2024

For the complete festival line-up, visit the website.

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