During the beginning of World War II a man wishing to climb one of the highest mountain peaks in the world, leaves behind his wife and unborn child so that this feat may be attempted. His wife cries when he leaves but he treats her with coldness and almost totally ignores her. While in British occupied territory he is placed under arrest in a POW camp along with his fellow climbers because of their roots in Austria, an ally of the Germans. To escape, they dressed in British military uniforms and native population disguises and went ahead to Tibet. Culture changed when the white people started to explore into a new environment.
Movies which depict white men in new or countries which are alien to outsiders, normally have an emphasis on what the white man teaches the people in the that country, and that's somewhat condescending; in this show, however, it is what the people in the other country teach the climber Harrer, yet his story isn't made more important than the story of the Tibetan people. Dalai Llama was seen to be the "perfection- great religious leader of the Tibetan people so much so that he was almost seen as a god, and treated like one. People were not able to look at him in the eyes and could not be seated higher than he was to distinguish who was more important. The white people, however, were seen as devils and were not allowed to cross over to the border of Tibet, but things turned around for the white people as a first aid instruction set serves as "special papers" to meet the Dalai Llama by these travelers, as the population of Tibet largely can not read. .
When the Tibetan people stuck their tongues out at the white men as a sign of welcoming them, they took it in the wrong way and thought that the Tibetans were being rude. Similarly, in another village, all the villagers clapped their hands to "chase the evil away- and the white people mistook that as a welcoming committee.