I tend to over-estimate the number of Bengali films I’ve watched. I guess I’m just too easily seduced by Tollywood’s bigger, brasher sibling in Mumbai.
According to my IMDB Bengali film list, just two of those that I have seen have been directed by Mrinal Sen, with his 1993 movie Antareen (pictured above) being the more useful to students of Bengali, thanks to the telephone conversation format between the writer and a mysterious woman that’s at its core. Continue reading
The BFI’s India on Film season will conclude this month with a back-to-back showing of Satyajit Ray’s renowned Apu Trilogy on Sunday 10 December.
And if the thought of seven hours or so of Bengali cinema might be a bit much for one sitting, the London Institute is also showing the films – Pather Panchali, Aparajito and (pictured above) Apu Sansar – in single showings in the following weeks. Continue reading
I’m often amazed by the cultural riches that casually appear online for our use and enjoyment – Open Culture being an excellent contributor and curator to this trend.
Another is the British Film Institute (BFI), whose National Archives recently released a collection of newly-digitised films from India from the turn of the 20th century to partition. Continue reading
Bengali Baul musician (pic: Souvid Datta)
Channel 4 has unveiled details of its first Indian film season for 2017 and this time around it’s all about the region’s music.
The season kicks off with Tuning 2 You, a six-part look at Indian folk music, and that’s followed by films on Ravi Shankar, Zakir Hussain and a collaboration between Wynton Marsalis and a group Pakistani musicians. Continue reading
When it comes to Indian films I am usually drawn to the easier-to-watch fare produced by the Mumbai-based industry.
A case in point would be the Bollywood film Race 2, which I am currently watching, and then there’s all those Salman Khan films I’ve seen since we got satellite television and the Star Gold channel. Continue reading
I’m listening to the new Dinosaur Jr album – up there with their best if you like that sort of thing – and wondering how I’ll ever keep up with all the, for want of a better word, ‘content’.
I bought my first Dinosaur Jr album (Green Mind – ok, but not the best one to start with) in a mall in Florida in 1992. Continue reading
After the disappointment of having no Spring season of Bollywood films on Channel 4 this year and then the slightly underwhelming, documentary-heavy Autumn season last year, I’m excited by this year’s Autumn line-up of Bollywood films.
Those in charge of programming have struck what looks to be a really nice mix of new/old and left-field/populist films that takes in a crime thriller, an award-winning legal drama and more besides.
Assuming I remember to record it – certainly not a given if past years are anything to go by – I’ll finally get to see Delhi 6, whose songs were playing when I first started listening to Raj & Pablo. Continue reading
Channel 4’s autumn Indian film season kicks off in the early hours of tomorrow morning and its recent trend to look further than the Mumbai film industry continues.
It begins, unusually, with a documentary in Bengali – though made by Polish director Andrzej Fidyk – about a mobile cinema run by Mr Battu and his two assistants.
Battu’s Bioscope (1998) is the first in a seven-strong run of documentaries about the many faces of India’s obsession with cinema titled Cinema On Cinema and will be followed later next month a quintet of Bollywood feature films. Continue reading
The first of Channel 4’s two Indian film seasons begins tonight/in the early hours of tomorrow with Qissa (2013), an award-winning social drama/fantasy is set at the time of India’s partition in 1947.
It’s the first of six films to be screened over the coming weeks that draw on “moving stories from across the country”, according to the UK television station.
Director Anup Singh’s tale – told in Punjabi with English subtitles – tells the story of Umber Singh (Irrfan Khan), a Sikh forced, with his wife and three daughters, to flee his village in the new state of Pakistan. Continue reading
Bengali films on TV are even rarer than posts on this blog in recent months.
So it’s nice to see Film 4 giving Satyaji Ray’s 1956 film Aparajito (অপরাজিত) an outing tonight/tomorrow morning.
Aparajito is the second part of Ray’s famous Apu Trilogy (following Pather Panchali and preceding Apur Sansar). Continue reading