Tom Alter: Real Life imitates Reel Life

Mysteriously in my case real life imitated reel life. Tom played the character of the enlightened grandfather in my film “The Path of Zarathustra” where I played a young woman seeking true wisdom and understanding the world as it really is. My experience of enacting these scenes with Tom and interacting with him on the sets of my film was like gaining wisdom on and off screen. I feel blessed that he agreed to play the most important role in my film and feel fortunate that all the other Parsi actors I approached before him said a big ‘No’. He may not be a Parsi but epitomizes the spirit of the character (which is beyond belonging to any religion) with every gesture, word and look.  He had an aura of something pure which makes the film come to life.Continue reading “Tom Alter: Real Life imitates Reel Life”

Releasing an Independently Made Film: My Experience with “The Path of Zarathustra”

At the very outset I’d like to begin this write-up by admitting that I am no expert on movie marketing or film distribution, far from it in fact. However these are indeed subjects close to my heart and I am happy that I’m in a position to continuously learn and improve in the same. While I’m partly a media professional as I write for MAM and elsewhere on cinema, I am very transparent in admitting that I’ve always wanted to work in films directly as well. Over the last few years ever since I quit the comfort of a secure corporate career, I’ve tried various routes to break in via both the conventional and unconventional routes. While the prospect of working with a good studio/production house always excited me, considering that the brand in question and the projects associated thereby would help me improve my learning, I realized that it is not easy to break in to that space.Continue reading “Releasing an Independently Made Film: My Experience with “The Path of Zarathustra””

Chaar Cutting Movie Review: Small in size, yet highly entertaining

So far, 2015 has been a difficult year for the film industry. Most of the “sureshot blockbusters” have had a bad run at the box office. Relatively smaller films like Dum Laga Ke Haisha, Piku and TWMR have shown the biggies that they can bring in the audience too..

In hindsight, Jamuura has nailed the release of its first feature ( a collection of  short films) perfectly. All four films, having won awards on international film festivals, narrate stories that would immediately strike a chord with you.Continue reading “Chaar Cutting Movie Review: Small in size, yet highly entertaining”

Sulemani Keeda (2014) Movie Review: The Lazy Bollywood

Language : Hindi | Running Time : 89 Minutes | Director : Amit Masurkar

There’s a definite understanding of the ways of Bollywood in Amit Masurkar’s “Sulemani Keeda”. In a bar, writers of two different industries – TV and film sit on opposite seats and start calling each other out. The writers trying to make it in the movies, Dulal (Naveen Kasturia) and Mainak (Mayank Tewari) say that writing for TV is shit and the writers who’ve made it in TV ask them what they’ve managed to achieve or even sell trying to make it in the world of movies. One of the men even shows us his VW car key. Life is about this pursuit between making money at the onset or struggling to find a foothold to showcase art, no matter how ungainly and untalented we are. It is for the reason that it emphasizes the struggle to showcase art that Sulemani Keeda becomes dear to some, despite it being as lazy and thin as the term slacker comedy is allowed to be.Continue reading “Sulemani Keeda (2014) Movie Review: The Lazy Bollywood”

Sulemani Keeda: Trailer

Sulemani Keeda Official TrailerDirected by Amit Masurkar, Sulemani Keeda tells the story of  Dulal and Mainak whose dream is to write script for a Bollywood film and are to realise their dream. This film narrates their journey which is coupled with heartbreaks, insanity and dealing with whims and fancies of Bollywood stars and producers amongst other things.

The film stars Naveen Kasturia, Mayank Tewari and Aditi Vasudev in principal roles, besides other actors. Sulemani Keeda which was screened at Mumbai Film Festival 2013 to much applause and acclaim is now set to release theatrically on 28th Nov. 2014 through PVR Director’s Rare.

In the meanwhile , check out the official trailer of the film which looks promising. And do let us know what you think about it.

Crossing Bridges Movie Review: A Universal yet Local, Back to the Roots Tale

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”

The World Before Her Review : Powerful and Thought Provoking

Language : Hindi and English | Running Time : 90 Minutes | Director : Nisha Pahuja

Post Contains Some Spoilers

The World Before Her-PosterIn the opening scene, we are introduced to Prachi a fiery 24 year old woman.  Prachi is a volunteer at Durga Vahini – the women’s wing of Vishwa Hindu Parishad (often regarded as the Indian equivalent of the Taliban) and teaches young girls self defence tactics. She talks about how western culture is slowly destroying our society and its moral fabric. And feels that women need to be equipped with these defense tactics to protect themselves in the dangerous times they are living in.Continue reading “The World Before Her Review : Powerful and Thought Provoking”

The World Before Her: Trailer

The World Before HerNisha Pahuja‘s The World Before Her is a Canadian documentary film that explores explores the complex and conflicting environment for young girls in India by profiling two young women participating in two very different types of training camp- Ruhi Singh,who aspires to become Miss India, and Prachi Trivedi, a militant Hindu nationalist with the Durga Vahini. Popular on the festival circuit, the film on the awards for Best Canadian Feature at the 2012 Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival and Best Documentary Feature at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival, and was a nominee for Best Feature Length Documentary at the 1st Canadian Screen Awards. It is now scheduled for a limited release across select screens in India on June 6th, with Anurag Kashyap presenting the film in India.

Check out the trailer of the film-


Continue reading “The World Before Her: Trailer”

In Conversation with Cinematographer Venkat Gangadhari: “As a DOP I believe firmly that I should be able to do everything on the spectrum”

Station is an indie Hindi feature film that’s been made by a team of Bangalore based professionals. Releasing on 28th March by PVR Director’s Rare, the film is directed by Saad Khan and produced by Sumit Ghosh. Last week had a conversation with Saad and Sumit (check it out here) & now we bring to you excerpts from a conversation with the DOP of the film, Venkat Gangadhari.

Venky shooting for StationStation is up for release. This is your debut as a DOP. How did it happen?

I met Saad when I was working on Khele Hum Jee Jaan Sey and he was with Gowariker as well. We bonded well from that time, would often discuss Station and share ideas on how shots and scenes could be executed etc. Two years ago, Saad came to Mumbai and narrated the final format of the story . I loved it and was on board since then.Continue reading “In Conversation with Cinematographer Venkat Gangadhari: “As a DOP I believe firmly that I should be able to do everything on the spectrum””