Category Archives: Film

What are the best Bengali films to watch?

Satyajit Ray's Pather PanchaliWhen 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

Too much content, too little time

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

Channel 4’s 2016 Bollywood film season

Ek Tha Tiger posterAfter 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

Aparajito (অপরাজিত) tonight

Satyajit Ray's Aparajito (The Unvanquished)

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

Channel 4 ends its Autumn Indian film season with The Square Circle

Daayra film posterIt looks like Chanel 4 will end this Autumn’s Indian film season with The Square Circle (Daaryaa).

The 1996 drama is set on the north-eastern coast of India and tells the story of a transvestite and an abducted girl who find friendship.

The abducted girl (Sonali Kulkarni) suffers terrible violence at the hands of a group of men she encounters. But, escaping them, she finds refuge with a transvestite (Nirmal Pandey). Continue reading

Channel 4 prepares to screen English Vinglish, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, Lootera and B.A. Pass

English Vinglish film posterWatching the beautifully shot, measured and thoughtful With You, Without You recently was very enjoyable.

But, as much as I enjoy the less-travelled roads of South Asian cinema, I do sometimes wish Channel 4 would show more of the films that get a mention on Love Bollywood on a Saturday morning.

So I’m particularly looking forward to the next instalment of Channel 4’s current Autumn Bollywood season, which will feature Sridevi in English Vinglish, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani with Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone and two other interesting-sounding recent films. Continue reading

Channel 4’s mini-Marathi film season set to continue with Kaksparsh and Ha Bharat Maza

Continuing Channel 4’s mini-season of Marathi films will be Kaksparsh – from established director-actor Mahesh Manjrekar (who played a gangster in Slumdog Millionaire) – and Ha Bharat Maza.

Set in Konkan in the 1930s, Kaksparsh (The Crow’s Touch) explores themes of sacrifice and morality within a Brahmin family.  Continue reading