Diamond in the Dunes is the true story of hope and baseball in China’s Xinjiang Province — a region harshly divided between an indigenous Muslim minority and the ruling Han Chinese.
The film follows Parhat Ablat, a 20-year-old Uyghur shepherd, as he attends the region’s racially segregated Xinjiang University and forms an integrated baseball team.
Parhat is on a fraught quest to raise his people out of what he calls their “spirit sickness.” While at the helm of Xinjiang University's first mixed-race team, he also starts a baseball program at a minority elementary school. For Parhat, baseball is more than a game; it’s a vehicle for spiritual transformation.
Finally, after a year of practice in the shadow of tense ethnic relations, Parhat and the university team travel 2,000 miles for their only game of the season — against a team of Tibetans on the Qinghai Plateau.
- Christopher RufoDirector