‘The Monk And The Gun’ Trailer: Bhutan Faces The Winds Of Political Change In Pawo Choyning Dorji’s New Film

Bhutanese filmmaker Pawo Choyning Dorji is looking to go two-for-two. His debut feature, 2019’s Lunana: A Yak In The Classroom, was Bhutan’s official entry for Best International Feature at the Oscars, and it made the cut as an Oscar nominee. Now Dorji is back with The Monk and the Gun, which Bhutan is also putting up for selection. Will this one reach the same critical heights?

Based on reviews out of Telluride and Middleburg, the answer is “yes”. The film is set in 2006 as Bhutan is facing winds of political change. A pair of monks are charged by an elderly Lama with gathering weapons. Meanwhile, an American antique dealer arrives in search a very specific weapon that the monks have come across.

The film stars Tandin Wangchuk, Harry Einhorn, Choeying Jatsho, and Kelsang Choejey. Dorji also wrote the script and produces.

Here’s the official synopsis: The Monk And The Gun captures the wonder and disruption as Bhutan becomes one of the world’s youngest democracies. Known throughout the world for its extraordinary beauty and its emphasis on Gross National Happiness, the remote Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan was the last nation to connect to the internet and television. And if that weren’t enough change, the King announced shortly afterwards that he would cede his power to the people via their vote and a new form of government: Democracy.

The Monk and the Gun hits theaters on February 2nd 2024.

Travis Hopson
Travis Hopson has been reviewing movies before he even knew there was such a thing. Having grown up on a combination of bad '80s movies, pro wrestling, comic books, and hip-hop, Travis is uniquely positioned to geek out on just about everything under the sun. A vampire who walks during the day and refuses to sleep, Travis is the co-creator and lead writer for Punch Drunk Critics. He is also a contributor to Good Morning Washington, WBAL Morning News, and WETA Around Town. In the five minutes a day he's not working, Travis is also a voice actor, podcaster, and Twitch gamer. Travis is a voting member of the Critics Choice Association (CCA), Washington DC Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA), and Late Night programmer for the Lakefront Film Festival.