Lyrical romance and lush cinematography intermingle in this neorealist feature debut that was a major award winner at the Sundance Film Festival. Syeed intricately weaves together contemporary ecological issues with traditional culture, as an unlikely romance blossoms between a boatman and a scientist on the breathtaking Dal Lake in Kashmir.
Surjo Deb in Person. Part gossip, part intellectual debate, adda is the quintessential Bengali pastime. Following a number of ongoing addas at street corners, cafes, markets and living rooms, this documentary by Surjo Deb is a free-flowing, intimate portrait of a city and its people in a time of transition: as the Calcutta of old turns into the 21st century Kolkata.
Tuni Chatterji in Person. Two docs that can only be described as visual poetry. A contemplative dialogue between music, landscape and the ephemeral quality of cinema, Okul Nodi (Tuni Chatterji) seeks the origins of Bhatiyali, the river music of Bangladesh. Shot on exquisite 35mm, I Am Micro (Shumona Goel/Shai Heredia) invokes the memories of an experimental filmmaker to deliver an ode to independent cinema.
In this doc, a companion piece to City of Photos, Jain interviews members from Calcutta’s oldest families and captures the stories around their family albums. What emerges is a powerful meditation on the tangled relationship between memory, history, and the photograph.
Angad Bhalla in Person Bhalla explores the injustice of solitary confinement and the transformative power of art in this must-see documentary that was an official selection of the Sundance Institute and the prestigious HotDocs festival. The film follows the unlikely friendship between a New York artist and one of America’s most famous inmates as they collaborate on an acclaimed art project. Panel discussion following film.
Starring Bollywood legend Raj Kapoor and co-directed by Bengali theatre legend Sombhu Mitra, this satire on the Indian middle class follows a poor migrant’s search for a drink of water. The outstanding songs feature Salil Choudary’s score and Shailendra’s poetry.
Mandeep Sethi and Harjant Gill in PersonThree American-Sikhs assert and articulate their identity from a male perspective: Mandeep Sethi’s Sikligar reveals the hidden story of Sikh weapon makers; Harjant Gill’s Roots of Love examines the changing significance of the turban; and Christina Antonakos-Wallace’s Article of Faith is the portrait of activist Sonny Singh who inspires young American-Sikhs to stand up for themselves.
Bollywood at the Castro A great cocktail needs the right mix - and this one only delivers but packs a punch, and a twist! Homi Adjania takes the classic masala love triangle - complete with song and dance and high camp - and gives it a modern flavor in this recent blockbuster from Bollywood.
Gotham Chopra in Person. Spiritual icon Deepak Chopra is the focus of this doc, an audience favorite at the SXSW Film Festival. Made by Gotham Chopra, it separates the man from the myth with a raw honesty only a son can have. But what starts as decoding quickly becomes an allegory of a world trying to make sense of itself.
Delicately crafted, both in story and visual style, this beautiful, emotional tale explores the unusual alliance between an elderly Indian woman (with a irrational fear of Africans) and a South African orphan in post-Apartheid South Africa. Based on Luthra’s earlier short, which won over 40 international awards including an Oscar nomination.
Pahuja goes behind-the-scenes at the Miss India Pageant and the Hindu fundamentalist movement to capture the tension between traditional and modern perspectives toward women in today’s India. A timely expose on the fundamental contradictions of a country in transition.
This striking film by first-time director Gurvinder Singh uses exquisite cinematography and an unusual cast of characters to portray a day in the life of a rural Punjabi family facing the demolition of their village. A worthy tribute to the legend of Indian cinema, the late Mani Kaul, who was executive producer on the film.
Four startling shorts: a desperate daughter makes a deal with the devil in the chilling Another Planet; a nun and her daughter struggle to escape the memories of civil war in the unsettling I Too Have A Name; a young girl negotiates sisterhood and womanhood in the moving Kaveri; a young mother is forced to play soldier in the post-apocalyptic and parched Boond (Drop).
Amit Ashraf in Person. Amit Ashraf’s dynamic script and creative visual vocabulary confirm that something is afoot in Bangladeshi cinema. The gritty, urban streets of Dhaka provide the backdrop for this noirish thriller about men who run away from family responsibility, and a rickshawallah who is compelled to bring them to justice.
Set to a pounding soundtrack of hip-hop and electronica, this gritty thriller follows the members of a girl gang intent on exacting revenge on abusive men in their East London housing estate. Bhogal’s inventive take on British genre cinema won him a place on the London Film Festival’s Best Newcomer list.
Filmmakers in Person. 3rd i’s shorts program goes coast-to-coast this year, with a kaleidoscope of short films from California and New York. Come to 3rd i’s Desi Dance Party later in the evening (10PM, Location TBA) and catch many of the filmmakers up close and personal!
Jon Shenk in Person. An inspiring, pictorially dazzling documentary from one of the Bay Area’s most exciting filmmakers! As rising sea levels threaten the existence of the Maldives, President Mohammed Nasheed fights for the survival of his country. People’s Choice Doc Award, Toronto Film Festival 2011