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Vivid, Startling and Raw

Film based on novel to be previewed as part of President’s Forum

Nearly two months before it is released to the public, the Hobart and William Smith community will have an opportunity to see a film that explores the friendship between two Afghan youths—a story that reviewers have described as “vivid, startling and raw.

As part of The President’s Forum, “The Kite Runner, based on Khaled Hosseini’s national bestseller, will be shown at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 2, at Geneva Movieplex 8 in the Geneva Centre shopping plaza.

“The Kite Runner tells the horrific and touching tale of Amir, a wealthy Afghan boy who is haunted by the guilt of betraying his childhood friend Hassan, the son of one of his father’s servants. The story is set in the tumultuous fall of Afghanistan’s monarchy and rise of the Taliban after the Soviet invasion and the mass exodus of refugees to Pakistan and the United States.

The film, to be officially released Nov. 2, was directed by Golden Globe nominee Marc Forster, who was born in Germany, studied film at New York University in the early ’90s, and has helmed other films including “Monster’s Ball, “Finding Neverland, and “Stranger than Fiction.

The New York Times’ review characterized the novel as “a vivid and engaging story that reminds us how long people have been struggling to triumph over the forces of violence — forces that continue to threaten [us] even today.

“The President’s Forum explores new ideas and the medium of film can be very thought-provoking, said President Mark D. Gearan.

The screening will be followed by a panel discussion with Professors Lester Friedman and Linda Robertson of media and society program, Assistant Professors Etin Anwar of religious studies department and Stacey Philbrick Yadav of political science department; Gearan will serve as moderator.

The President’s Forum Series, established in the winter of 2000 by Gearan, is designed to bring a variety of speakers to campus to share their knowledge and ideas with students, faculty and staff of the Colleges, as well as with interested community members. Other speakers in the Fall 2007 semester series will include Chris Myers Asch, the driving force behind the U.S. Public Service Academy; Peace Corps Director Ron Tschetter, and Wendy Puriefoy ’71, a national expert in school reform.

To view the trailer, visit:

Tickets to the showing are free and can be reserved by e-mailing beginning at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 27. Space is limited to 225 individuals; tickets will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. In the e-mail, please include Kite Runner Reservation in the subject line and your full name and campus box number in the message.