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Directed byPema Tseden
Written byPema Tseden
Produced byWu Leilei
Wang Xuebo
Zhang Xianmin[2]
StarringShide Nyima
CinematographyLu Songye
Edited bySong Bing
Music byWang Jue
Heaven Pictures (Beijing) Culture & Media Co., Ltd.
Beijing YiHe Star Film Production Ltd.
Beijing Ocean & Time Culture Communication Co, Ltd[3]
Distributed byBeijing Herui Film[4] Icarus Films
Release dates
  • September 5, 2015 (2015-09-05) (Venice[1])
  • December 9, 2016 (2016-12-09) (China)
Running time
123 minutes
Box officeCN¥949,000[4]

Tharlo (Chinese: 塔洛) is a 2015 Chinese Tibetan-language comedy-drama film written and directed by Pema Tseden.[3] It premiered in the Horizons section at the 72nd edition of the Venice Film Festival.[5] It was released in China on December 9, 2016, and on DVD by Icarus Films on February 14, 2017.[4]


Sheep herder Tharlo (Shide Nyima), commonly known as "Ponytail" for his trademark hairstyle, goes to town to get an ID card photo as ordered by police chief Dorje (Tashi). Having lived all his life alone in the mountains, he is shocked to meet a modern young hairdresser Yangtso (Yang Shik Tso), who not only sports short hair but smokes. Yangtso flirts and even suggests travelling with him. He gets drunk at a karaoke bar and ends up spending the night at her home.

Tharlo returns to the mountains but not for long. One day, he gets drunk again and a number of the sheep he tends are killed by wolves, which angers the sheep owner, who scolds and slaps him repeatedly. Soon, Tharlo returns to town with a large stack of cash from selling the sheep, places the money in front of Yangtso, and tells her to keep it. She asks to shave his head so that he won't be recognized and he agrees. But his desire for a new life with her is dashed when he wakes up the next morning to find her missing.

After failing to find her, Tharlo calls on chief Dorje at the police station. However, before he can reveal the purpose of his visit, the chief orders him to go to town again and get another ID card photo because the bald Tharlo looks different from his new ID card photo. Speechless, Tharlo walks out of the police station and heads back into the mountains. After his motorbike runs out of gas, he begins drinking again, then lights a firecracker in his hand. Just before it explodes, the screen goes black.[6][7][8][9][10]


  • Shide Nyima as Tharlo
  • Yang Shik Tso as Yangtso
  • Tashi as Police chief Dorje
  • Jinpa as Sheep owner
  • Dekyi Tserang as singer (Special appearance)


Box office[edit]

The film grossed CN¥949,000 at the Chinese box office.[4]


Date Award Category Nominee Result Notes
2015 72nd Venice International Film Festival Venice Horizons Award Tharlo Nominated
52nd Golden Horse Film Festival and Awards Best Director Pema Tseden Nominated
Best Adapted Screenplay Tharlo Won
Best Feature Film Nominated
16th International Film Festival Tokyo Filmex Grand Prize Won
Student Jury Prize Won [11]
2016 23rd Beijing College Student Film Festival Artistic Exploration Award Won
Best Picture Nominated
Best Director Pema Tseden Nominated
2017 17th Chinese Film Media Awards Best Film Tharlo Nominated [12]
Best Director Pema Tseden Nominated
Best Actor Shide Nyima Nominated
Best Screenplay Pema Tseden Nominated
Best New Performer Shide Nyima Nominated
31st Golden Rooster Awards Best Low Budget Feature Tharlo Won [13][14]
Best Cinematography Lu Yesong Nominated
Best Editing Liang Chi-song, Song Bing Nominated


  1. ^ "塔洛 (2015)". movie.douban.com (in Chinese). douban.com. Retrieved December 16, 2016.
  2. ^ http://www.atlanticfilm.com/event/a3786bfc4d7392a47d9da3202abad00d [dead link]
  3. ^ a b Wendy Ide (October 2, 2015). "'Tharlo': Review". Screen International. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  4. ^ a b c d "塔洛(2016)". cbooo.cn (in Chinese). Retrieved December 16, 2016.
  5. ^ Patrick Frater (September 2, 2015). "Venice Festival: Asian Shadows Picks up Tibetan 'Tharlo'". Variety. Retrieved 27 April 2016.
  6. ^ Scheck, Frank (4 October 2016). "'Tharlo': Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
  7. ^ Huang, Tony (4 October 2016). ""I Want the Audience to Look According to Their Own Free Will": Pema Tseden on Tharlo". filmmakermagazine.com. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
  8. ^ "Tharlo". icarusfilms.com. 7 September 2017. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
  9. ^ Semerene, Diego (27 September 2016). "Tharlo". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
  10. ^ "塔洛 Tharlo Tibetan movie (with Chinese subtitle)". YouTube. 6 February 2017. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
  11. ^ Liz Shackleton (November 30, 2015). "'Tharlo' wins top prize at Tokyo Filmex". Screen International. Retrieved 18 June 2017.
  12. ^ "第17届华语电影传媒盛典公布提名名单". Mtime (in Chinese). August 29, 2017.
  13. ^ "金鸡奖提名:《潘金莲》领跑 范冰冰周冬雨再争影后". ifeng (in Chinese). August 16, 2017.
  14. ^ "邓超范冰冰分获影帝影后《我不是潘金莲》成金鸡大赢家". ifeng (in Chinese). September 16, 2017.

External links[edit]