A peek into many lives

Short Films

The first Bangalore edition of the 13th Mumbai International Film Festival took place at Freedom Park recently. With a focus on the documentary, short fiction and animation format, it saw a variety of films exploring a range of subjects being screened.

An average of nine screenings took place each day and day two saw eight Indian films and French film called ‘Petzl Roc Trip Argentina’ being showcased.

Among the documentaries screened, ‘Cassandra’s Gift’ was a visual essay documenting the work of artist Nalini Malani, ‘Golden Mango’ looked at the socio-economic conditions of our society through the eyes of a young boy and ‘O Friend, This Waiting!’ traced the life and times of Kshetrayya devadasis, a culture that was eventually lost when compared to prostitution.

But the highlight of the day was Satyanshu Singh and Devanshu Singh’s Kashmiri short film Tamaash (The Puppet), which was about two brothers in Kashmir who encounter a witch doctor and the adventure that follows. The surreal film, which dealt with notions of innocence and guilt, even saw the crowd applaud at the end.

While the auditorium was too small to accommodate large numbers of film enthusiasts, the ones who showed up enjoyed the quality and variety of screened films. Rahul Reddy, a student of Government Film and Television Institute, said, “For me, it’s just an enriching experience to watch so many different films and I’ve been coming here since day one. Being a film student, I find some of them inspiring as I’m learning new kinds of camera techniques and film treatments. I’m a big fan of short films as more thought goes into them.”

However, avid film-goer Nagaraj feels that the youth might find the festival slightly unappealing. “These days, it’s rare to see certain techniques being used. For instance, in the film ‘O Friend, This Waiting’, still photos are used with audio added instead of videos. But you don’t see that anymore. That’s why old people like me will enjoy the choice of films that look at culture and traditions but youngsters may not,” he shared.
Jimmy Luke, festival coordinator, said that he is content with the response that the festival’s first edition here.

“Our target was to have at least 150 audience members each day and across the two venues where the films are being screened, this has been the case since the inauguration. This is a chance for film-makers from everywhere to showcase their work to keen film-goers, students and others in the industry. The selection of films has been picked out of the best national and international entries that we received for our competition category in Mumbai,” he said.

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