Seven Years in Tibet

Director: Jean-Jacques Annaud
Year Released: 1997
Rating: 3.0

Sportsmen Heinrich Harrer (Brad Pitt) and his buddy Peter Aufschnaiter (David Thewlis) leave their native Austria to climb Nanga Parbat (one of the ten highest mountains on Earth), they're both arrested by the Brits for being Nazis (which the movie glosses over), they escape and wind up in Tibet where at first they're rejected for being foreigners ... and then Harrer just so happens to meet the 14th Dalai Lama (Jamyang Jamtsho Wangchuk) and becomes his confidant.  This was widely dismissed upon its release - I remember someone joking that it could been titled Seven Years in My Seat - and while it is leisurely paced (and Pitt's accent is notably atrocious), it's also incredibly beautiful (watch it on as large a screen as you can find) and the bond that forms between Heinrich and Kundun-as-a-teenager is deeply touching, as the latter is fascinated with the cinema and the world in general.  Hollywood tends to get iffy when exploring the spiritual side of things, but this is sober in tone and quite meditative: you have to try to protect everything, including the worms.