To Get to Heaven, First You Have to Die (Bihisht faqat baroi murdagon)
To Get to Heaven, First You Have to Die (Bihisht faqat baroi murdagon) (2006)

A young man gets the jolt of masculinity he's been looking for in a dangerous and unexpected way in this dark comedy-drama from Tajikistan. Kamal (Khurched Golibekov) is a nineteen-year-old who has been married to a beautiful girl his… More

Directed By:
Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: May 23, 2006
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Critic Score: 64% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Wally Hammond
Time Out

This finely directed but tough Tajik tale is part love story, part social critique.

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Kevin Maher
Times (UK)

Despite the crime-filled third act it has the motor of a US teen sex comedy and could easily be repackaged and called Kamal's Gotta Have It! God knows it couldn't be any worse.

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Elliott Noble
Sky Cinema

Throw in the inscrutable performances, the peculiar switch in tone and that head-scratcher of a title, and you'd be better off using the hour to tell someone about your childhood.

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Deborah Young

Killing makes a man a man in the puzzling To Get to Heaven You Have to Die, an artfully lensed but psychologically unpersuasive initiation tale from Tajikistan.

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Peter Bradshaw

The look and feel of the movie is involving, especially the cool, controlled way Usmonov allows the story to develop without forcing the pace. Unfortunately, the ending is unconvincing in human terms.

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Nigel Andrews
Financial Times

The plot's twists and turns are less to the point, or less to be prized, than the whey-faced humour, the solid humanity, the feel for the epiphanic in the everyday.

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Jon Fortgang

Atmospheric in its early stages but a little too reticent towards the end, this is nevertheless a bleakly intriguing drama about the darker reaches of the male psyche.

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David Gritten
Daily Telegraph (UK)

A jolting journey towards a swaggering notion of manhood, directed with assured expertise by Jamshed Usmonov.

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Robert Hanks
Independent (UK)

It feels like a Central Asian remake of some American indie thriller, except that few American films would be prepared to take things so slowly, or with so few words.

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