Lest we forget – a retrospective of Tapan Sinha’s films (4 films)
An eternal romantic – a retrospective of Vijay Anand’s films (4 films)
Navya Movement and Kannada Cinema (3 films)
Homages (Three films)
And miles to go… Tributes to Aribam Syam Sharma
Birth Centenary tributes (Three)
India @60 – celebrating India’s independence
(6 films – 3 feature, 3 documentaries)
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INDIAN PANORAMA 2007
Indian Panorama this year presents a bouquet of 36 films, 21 features and 15 non feature films. The package is a mixed bag with stalwarts like Budhadeb Dasgupta and Adoor Gopalakrishnan presenting two films each. The section would have Ami Iyasin Aar Amaar Madhubala (The Voueurs- Feature) and Naushad Ali- the Melody continues (Non Feature) by Budhadeb Dasgupta and Naalu Penunungal (Four Women- Feature) and The Dance of the Enchantress (Non Feature) by Adoor Gopalakrishnan.
The debut directors like Sameer Hanchante, Samir Chanda, and Bhavna Talwar present their films Gafla (Scam), Ek Nadir Galpo (Tale of a river), and Dharm respectively at the festival.
LEST WE FORGET – TAPAN SINHA
The section presents the work of master story teller and legendary director, Tapan Sinha through a clutch of four films, Kabulliwalla, Sagina Mahato,
Cast: Kali Bannerjee, Chhabi Biswas, Tinku Thakur, Radhamohan Bhattacharya
Cinematography : Subodh Ray
Music : Ravi Shanker
Synopsis: Based on a Tagore story of the same name, the film is a touching tale of Rahmat Sheikh, a Pathan who came from Afghanistan to Calcutta to make a living. However is homesick and seeks the company of children, particularly little girls as they remind him of his own daughter back home. Thus one day he meets Mini, a five-year-old daughter of a writer, and they become great friends. The beautiful friendship that develops is suddenly interrupted by Rahmat’s being sent to prison for assaulting his landlord.Years layter Rehmat returns and visits Mini on her wedding day only to realize that his own daughter also must have grown up to a marriageable age…
Sagina Mahato (1970)
Synopsis: A simple but brave labour organiser is picked by used by some trade unionists and made a Labour Welfare Officer. They try to use him to achieve their own nefarious ends but fail.
Adalat O Ekti Meye (1982)
Late Vijay Anand was a director with a difference. Extending the persona of Dev Anand, Vijay created some masterpieces with memorable music. As films, these works stand out till date and remind us of his vision from behind the camera. As a tribute to his genius, the festival presents a bouquet of his four films; His directorial debut Nau Do Gyarah (1957), Tere Ghar Ke Samne (1963),Guide (1965),and Jewel Thief(1967).
35mm/colour/Hindi/ 160 minutes/EST
Director: Vijay Anand
Cast: Dev Anand, Waheeda Rehman,Leela Chitnis, Kishore Sahu
Cast: Dev Anand, Ashok Kumar, Vyjayantimala, Tanuja, Helen, Master Sachin
Music : S D Burman
Nau Do Gyarah (1957)
35mm/Black & White/Hindi/ 170 minutes/EST
Director: Vijay Anand
Cast: Dev Anand, Kalpana Kartick, Shashi Kala
Music : S D Burman
Navya Movement and Kannada Cinema
A literary movement in Kannada language inspired a generation of filmmakers and marked a turning point in Kannada Cinema. This movement was Navya Movement that loosely began with the publishing of two novels by Gopal Krishna Adiga in the late sixties. Also known as literary modernism, the movement inspired Kannada filmmakers and found manifestation in Kannada cinema.
As part of the section, the festival screens three landmark Kannada films; Samskara (1970) directed by Pattabhi Rama Reddy, Chomana Dudi (1975) directed by Late B V Karanth, and Ghatashradha (1977) directed by Girish Kasravalli.
35mm/Black & White/Kannada/ 113 minutes/EST
Written by : Prof. U R Ananthamurthy
Cinematography : Tom Cowan
Director: Pattabhi Rama Reddy
Cast: Girish Karnad, Snehlata Reddy, P Lankesh, P R Jayarama
Synopsis: Set in a small South Karnataka village about half a century ago, the film revolves around a group of Brahmins. A young, scrupulous priest, Praneshcharya leads them in conducting their lives strictly by tradition. But Narayanappa is a rebel, leading a dissolute life and regularly breaking their tenets. When he suddenly dies, his mistress, Chandri asks the Brahmins to conduct his funeral rites.
The village elders discuss the issue but evade performing the last rites. Praneshcharya is approached for guidance, seeking which he in turn consults the hold texts. His task is further complicated as he has meanwhile surrendered himself to Chandri’s charms, passionately and helplessly. Filled with remorse, he sets out to seek guidance. Wandering about, he meets a low caste man, Putta, with whom he strikes a rapport and the two travel together. At a fair, Putta urges Praneshcharya to eat at a nearby temple where a free meal is being offered to Brahmins. While eating at a place he has no right to be, Praneshcharya realizes that having succumbed to his own weaknesses, he had no right to judge other. He returns to perform the funeral rites.
Adapted from U.R. Ananthamurthy’s remarkable story and helped along by excellent scripting by Girish Karnad, this landmark film launched the Navya Movement in Kannada cinema.
Synopsis: The story of a child widow seen through the eyes of a young boy, this film is set in the 1920s rural Karnataka steeped in orthodoxy. Yamunakka as a widow, lives with her father. Udupa, who runs a traditional scripture school for young Brahmins. She has to live within a lot of restrictions and cannot lead a normal life, and a little boy is her only friend. However, she protects Nani, a young student who is bullied by classmates and is later witness to Yamnua’s desperate attempts to end an undesirable pregnancy. She is attracted to the village teacher, an outsider and get pregnant. Though he arranges for an abortion, the village elders discover the secret and retribution in swift.
Her father performs the Ghatashradha, or death rites performed for a living person to mark her excommunication from the Brahminical society. Head shaven, clad in a white sari, the little boy taken away, she is banished from the village and tries to kill herself in the forests that surround the village. Meanwhile her father prepares to remarry a 16 year old girl, young enough to be his daughter.
Based on a U.R. Ananthamurthy story, this was Girish Kasaravalli’s debut feature, and one that was responsible for strengthening the Navya Movement in Kannada cinema in a major way. The film has some wonderfully shot and enacted sequences, especially when Yamuna, chased by the villagers, takes refuge among in the dark forest, which seems far kinder than the village she has been thrown out of.
O. P. NAYYAR
K K MAHAJAN
Vanamala Devi – An actress who brought grace and ease much before the methodical acting died last year. Vanamala Devi acted in both Hindi and Marathi cinemas. The festival screens the first national film award winning film, Shyamchi Aai (Marathi) as a homage to her. She played the role of Shyam’s mother in the film.
The festival also pays homage to Omkar Prasad Nayyar the renowned music director, who passed away last year by screening his film, Aar Paar. Malti Sahai, former Director, IFFI and a film historian will present the section.
K K Mahajan, the renowned Cinematographer who introduced an extraordinary style of cinematography through his films, Saara Akash, Us Ki Roti, Bhuvan Shome etc. also passed away last year. The festival pays homage to him by screening his film, Saara Akash. The renowned cinematographer, A K Bir will present the section.
And miles to go…
(Tributes to Aribam Syam Sharma)
The section is a tribute to Aribam Syam Sharma, a living legend who in the face of all adversity like lack of facilities and finances created masterpieces like Imagi Ningthem, Ishanou and Sangai and won international acclaim. The festival screens Ishanou as a reminder of his genius as also his other film Rajarshi Bhagyachandra of Manipur a selection in Indian Panorama this year.
“Ishanou records the revival of regionalism in all its strength and glory. Aribam Syam Sharma, with his rich background of music and philosophy, proudly propagates the Manipur culture through this film.” (Festival News (IFFI, Madras), 20 Jan 1991.)
In Ishanou, small happy family, somewhere in the Manipur valley, of husband, wife and little girl, under the caring and protective authority of a market woman head of the family, breaks up when Tampha, the young wife, is possessed by the divinity of the mysterious maibi phenomenon and goes through a series of violent fits of vision and trace till she runs away from home in frantic nocturnal quest of her maibi guru for initiation into the sect of the chosen. Magic and mystery break upon the mundane world of buying and selling and common rituals like that of a young girl’s ears being pierced and the buying of a second hand scooter and a promotion in office bringing into play the world of the maibis, with their exquisite ritual singing and dancing and worship and mythmaking. But behind the colourful spectacle of the traditional Manipuri Lai Haraoba, into which Tampha almost loses herself in enraptured absorption, there lurks the pain of a mother who can no longer nurture a child who now grows into a stranger. The film closes on that image of estrangement that almost stifles the sheer grandeur and glory of the ritual festival.
(Celebrating India’s independence)
Curated by Government of Goa, the section presents three prominent features from three different languages. The films are : Nam Iruvar (Tamil), a landmark film by A V Meiyappan, Biyallis (Bengali), another landmark film by Hemen Gupta and the all time favourite by Manoj Kumar, Shaheed (Hindi).
This apart the Films Division presents the following three documentaries: