Kite Flyers

BFI Doc Society: Made of Truth


Gannesh Rajah


Jessica Bishop


Production support


Before the first light of day, two friends Muhammad and Imran, embark on a weekly journey, traveling from their urban home in West London to a remote beach in a small seaside town in Kent. With the arrival of the first rays of the morning sun, they begin the beautiful yet dangerous pastime of kite flying. Though now banned in their home country of Pakistan in 2005, the practice has recently been sanctioned by the local Kent council and thus, undergoing a subtle metamorphosis, the tradition has evolved; the once popular Eastern activity finding new life on windswept British beaches. Using the kite’s strings which are coated in powdered glass, along with a tremendous amount of skill and teamwork, they aim to cut the strings of their competitors' kites. Only two kites fight at once; competing to be the last kite standing (flying)! If your kite falls, you lose respect. The weekly competition culminates in a ritualistic bonfire on the beach, as the men set off fireworks; echoing celebratory memories of kite flying from their youth with their families. Then, with the dying sun, they all leave the beach and journey back to London. Exploring themes of belonging, heritage, identity and male friendship, KITE FLYERS is a unique documentary that spans cultures and continents.