As Guns & Guitars recently made its debut in the OTT platform MUBI India, it seems like a good time to revisit our sojourn in Shillong, the rock capital of India, during the shoot of the film.
I still remember my first (aborted) attempt to visit Sikkim – also known as the lone bother of the northeastern states of seven sisters – way back in 1996. We, a bunch of friends from across India, boarded a train from Guwahati on a cold night in the end of December with a plan of spending the New Year in Sikkim. But, ironically we had to return halfway as the railway connectivity to the NJP station – in the foothill of Sikkim – was cut off due to a blast by the insurgent…Continue reading “Lone brother of the seven sisters …”
[life is what happens to us when we are busy planning other things – said John Lennon. And that precisely what happened to us when the series on Guns & Guitars journey got derailed – or rather took a long halt on the way… But better late than never. We restart the journey here with a visit to the state of Assam…]Continue reading “The Things Which We Fail to Express in our Words…”
Memories of a Forgotten War National Award-winning film critic-turned-filmmaker is a forthcoming documentary film on a very relevant topic, the battles of the 1940’s in the North-East which seem to be now forgotten by most people. The film is produced by Subimal Bhattacharjee,an independent defence, cyber security and high end technology policy issues policy analyst based out of New Delhi and directed by Utpal Borpujari,National Award-winning film critic-turned-filmmaker whose films have been doing the festival circuit of late.
It is a universally known fact the World War II comprehensively changed the geopolitics of the world. Manipur and Nagaland in Northeastern region of India were important frontiers of the World War II in what was more popularly known as the Burma Front. It was in the rough terrain with dense forest in Manipur and Nagaland that the Allied Army and its Japanese counterpart fought the decisive battles that stopped the Japanese advance into India.Continue reading “Trailer and Synopsis of “Memories of a Forgotten War”: A feature-length documentary film on the battles of World War II fought in Northeastern India”
Among the Indian films that I missed out in the 15th Mumbai Film Festival (MFF 2013) there were two of them which coincidentally I went on to watch this week. While I had seen a part of Katiyabaaz during the festival and could not complete it due to another overlapping film, I did not realize that Crossing Bridges would be as good as the feedback I would receive later on. Blame it on the tight schedules during such film festivals when one has to balance one’s priorities and yet end up missing a few good films always, but then it’s always good to make amends when one gets an opportunity to do so. Post MFF 2013 I had been observing the impressive run of Sange Dorjee Thongdok’s Shertukpen (also spelled as Sherdukpen) film, Crossing Bridges as it not only went on to become the first ever film to be made in this particular language (belonging to Arunachal Pradesh), but also bagged the distinction of becoming the recipient of the National Award for Best Film in Shertupken, a first for the language.Continue reading “Crossing Bridges Movie Review: A Universal yet Local, Back to the Roots Tale”
Directed by Sange Dorjee Thongdok, Crossing Bridges is the first feature film ever to be made in the language of Shertukpen, which is an indigenous dialect native to the state of Arunachal Pradesh. The film also went on to win the National Award for Best Feature Film in Shertukpen for 2013. Premiered at the Mumbai Film Festival in 2013, Crossing Bridges has also been to other festivals including Kerala, Dharamshala, Melbourne (Indian Film Festival). The film is produced by Tenzing Norbu Thongdok and written by Sange Dorjee Thongdok himself. The music is by Anjo John while Pooja Gupte is the DOP and Sanglap Bhowmick the editor. Featuring a host of non-actors, mainly local people from the region itself, the film has Phuntsu Khrime and Anshu Jamsenpa in the lead. Incidentally Anshu Jamsenpa holds the unique distinction of having scaled Mount Everest thrice including a record-breaking twice in a span of 10 days.Continue reading “Crossing Bridges: Trailer”
“Any policies, any programs, project (of the central govt.) we want to apply, we always get nullified because we don’t meet up with the population criteria. Are you indirectly propagating population explosion? In the line of carbon credit we too should get something called population credit, because we are controlling the population of the country – we are just 17 persons per square km” – the young Parliamentary Secretary (Tourism) from Arunachal, Mr. Pasang Dorjee Sona, was telling me. Although generally I don’t have much to agree with politicians, here I didn’t have much option but to nod in agreement.Continue reading ““Restaurant/ Shop cum Petrol/Diesel Dealer””
“Every Naga can use a gun and everyone can also use a guitar” – says Dr. Nicky Kire, elected representative and the advisor to the Musical Task force, Nagaland. He was talking to us during our sojourn in beautiful Nagaland during the making of Guns and Guitars. Paradoxical although he may have sound, he was speaking the truth. After all we were in the land which has witnessed one of the oldest unsolved insurgency problems in the world. And it is also the only state of the country to have a wing of a ministry dedicated to music – viz., music task force.Continue reading “….And I started looking inward for the answer”
Mr. Murphy simply loves us. And constantly demands our attention. Whenever there is a deadline looming, he makes sure that we don’t ignore him one way or the other. This time also there was no exception –just as we were rushing against time to finish our film ‘Guns and Guitars’, Murphy’s Law made its presence felt loud and clear… and our editing computer crashed!Continue reading “The Story of Twin 'Births'…”