HONEYMOON IN KABUL
LIMELIGHT CREATIVE MEDIA
Honeymoon in Kabul follows newly weds, Maggie Haertsch and clown doctor Jean Paul Bell, on their whirlwind mission to take medical aid and humour to the children of Kabul.
Maggie and Jean Paul arrive in Kabul amidst riots, and discover that their precious cargo of humidi cribs and advanced medical equipment is strewn over a dirty hospital floor, useless in a country where electricity is unreliable and 1000’s of children are dying of malnutrition and dysentery every year.
The film explores the politics of aid in a country long suffering from aid fatigue. One of the central themes of the film explores issues and sensitivities around charity and aid. Whether well-intentioned amateurs could actually make any difference in a country where the fundamental problems are so profound that they’ve cracked the very bedrock of Afghan society.
Humour in the face of this adversity is a major theme in the film. Maggie and Jean Paul’s stoicism and sense of humour is reflected in equal measure by many of the Afghan characters we meet in the story.
In the film we witness Jean Paul’s belief in the power of humour to entertain and transcend cross cultural barriers with his simple paper bag trick. He entertains gun wielding Afghans, nervous American soldiers, doctors and sick children as he endeavours to introduce his “paper bag revolution.”
Maggie and Jean Paul find their motives questioned by one of Afghanistan's most respected political activists and parliamentarian Malalaya Joya, when they visit her safe house armed with donations of baby clothes and a few toys.
Fear turns to relief in the end of the film, when they are lucky to get out alive.
Honeymoon in Kabul is an inspiring story about 2 passionate Aussies who discover that the delivery of aid in Afghanistan is as complex and delicate as any second marriage.
The film has gone on to critical acclaim nationally and abroad, and was featured in the Zero Film Festival, winning the People's Choice Award in both New York and Los Angeles.
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Screenings of the film raised $20,000 for a hospital in Kabul.