Thursday, October 14, 2010
Akaler Shandhaney @ 9th Asian Film Festival
In the pix: Smita Patil and Dhritiman Chatterjee in Akaler Shandhaney
Akaler Shandhaney (In Search of a Famine)
Cast: Smita Patil, Dhritiman Chatterjee, Gita Sen, Rajen Tarafdar, Sreela Muzumder, Dipankar De
Directed by Mrinal Sen
7 September, 1980. A film crew comes to a village to make a film about a famine, which killed five million Bengalees in 1943. It was a man made famine, a side- product of the war, and the film crew will create the tragedy of those millions who died of starvation. The film documents the convivial life among the film crew and the hazards, problems and tension of film making on location. The actors live a double life, and the villagers, both simple and not-so-simple folk watch their work with wonder and suspicion. But as the film progresses, the recreated past begins to confront the present. The uneasy coexistence of 1943 and 1980 reveals bizarre connection, involving a village woman whose visions add a further dimension of time—that of future. A disturbing situation, indeed, for the “famine-seekers”
Awards: National awards for Best Film, Best Editing, and Best Direction and Best Screenplay for Mrinal Sen. Also won Silver Bear at Berlin International Film Festival
(9th Third Eye Asian Film Festival opens on Oct 29. 2010 in Mumbai. Over the next seven days, the festival will screen 80 contemporary Asian films and 50 short films at YB Chavan Centre in South Mumbai, Plaza Cinema in Central Mumbai, and Fun Republic in Western suburbs. For more information on the festival, you could log in to http://www.affmumbai.com/ The film schedules will be uploaded on the website before the festival opens.
To watch the festival, you have to register as a festival delegate at the delegate counters opened at the three venues from Oct 15 between 1 and 7 pm. A registration fee of Rs 400 will enable you to access any film at any of the three venues. Students and film society activists can avail the delegate card at a concessional rate of Rs 200 by showing an ID proof. Registration is a simple process, and no photographs are required for acquiring the delegate card.
Please do not forget to pick up a copy of the festival catalogue, your definitive guide to the festival fare along with your card. It is edited by well-known film critic Maithili Rao)