3rd I




Thursday, November 5
Roxie Theater, San Francisco

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Director: Various
Country/Year: USA
Running Time: 90 mins
Language: Various

Bay Area Filmmakers in Person
Neo-Benshi Performances by Summi Kaipa and Neelanjana Banerjee

Bay Area filmmakers explore a range of topics and styles in this year's installment of 3rd i's signature opening night.

Bay Area writers Summi Kaipa and Neelanjana Banerjee re-imagine classic Bollywood films to hilarious effect, with new scripts performed for selected scenes. Kaipa puts a surfer spin on Raj Kapoor's saucy, teen romance Bobby, while Banerjee puts a queer twist on the Yash Chopra classic Silsila.

Summi Kaipa is a graduate of the Iowa Writers Workshop, and author of three chapbooks of poetry. Neelanjana Banerjee currently works as a teaching artist with the San Francisco WritersCorps, and is also an editor and blogger with Hyphen magazine. Both performers are co-editors of Indivisible: Contemporary South Asian American Poetry forthcoming from University of Arkansas Press in April 2010.

Shireen Pasha's Slowly Slowly Mud and Lotus (2009, Afghanistan/India/USA, 21 mins, Dari with English subtitles) observes Afghani artisans as they rebuild Murad Khane, a medieval quarter of old Kabul with special mud, the memory of a beautiful lotus and, most of all, patience. "This mud is initially dead," says Ustad Bismillah, a master adobe craftsman, of the material he uses for the reconstruction, "but in our designs it comes alive."

Kirthi Nath's Flying (2009, India/USA, 9 mins, English) is a personal essay inspired by the memories of a loved one lost. “Sometimes it is hard to imagine what I have never experienced, but sometimes, that is the only way” Flying is a poetic visual documentary journey about loving, grief, letting go and a search for faith. Kirthi Nath makes films that seem spun from dreams. As an awar- winning independent South Asian filmmaker, her films explore female subjectivity, memory, desire, spirituality and racial and sexual identities.

Mandeep Sethi raps about an emotionally charged moment in Sikh history in his music video, 1984, directed by Shane Gill (2009, USA, 5.5 mins, English), which uses archival footage provided by ABC, CBS, NBC News courtesy of the Truth & Justice campaign. This is the second music video from the Californian-based Hip Hop Artist's debut album, Paleofuture.

Kamalpreet Kaur's Location/Situatedness Through Memory (2009, Canada, 11 mins, English) , shot in crisp B&W, attempts to capture the Sikh encounter with colonial power. Influenced by the works of the French New Wave, Marguerite Duras and Polish director Krzysztof Kie?lowski, Kamalpreet takes into account their cinematic style and philosophical underpinnings. Originally from San Francisco, she now lives along with her husband in Toronto, Canada.

Also featuring new works by Arpita Kumar (Holding it Together, 2009, USA, 2 mins, English) and Sandhya Kumar (I Cannot Remember My Mother, 2009, USA, 2min, Silent)