Friday, December 9, 2011

Remembering the Masters

Phillipino package comes with distinctive themes

Phillipino package comes with distinctive themes
Meera Jasmine S

The seven films in the Philippine cinema package give us a direct insight into the lives of people who were struggling under the Spanish colonialism and the American military rule. These movies will be a novel experience to the film buffs here.

  ‘Century of Birthing’ by Lav Diaz shows the story of a priest and a film director. The filmmaker is unsatisfied with his profession. Producer, Screen-writer and Director Pepe Diokno is at the fest with “Clash” which depicts the horror of despotic rulers and sketches the present social circumstances of Philippines. The movie depicts the brutality of the death squads allegedly sponsored by the local governments in Philippines.

  Brillante Mendoza’s film ‘Kinatay’ portrays the story of a student of Police Academy who gets involved in a murderous gang. The movie is a caricature, mesmerizing the current generation’s craving to get rich rich quickly.

  ‘The Bet Collector’ by the new-wave Filipino filmmaker Jeffrey Jeturian, presents  an aging bet collector (Amy) who finds her mundane existence transformed by an unforeseen series of events. The film has already been screened in 16 international film festivals.

  The film ‘Fable of Fish’ directed by, Adolfo Borinaga Alix Jr examines belief, specifically the curious conflation of folk tales, urban myths and Christianity that are unique to the Philippines.

  ‘Independencia’ by Raya Martin is a period film which depicts travails and miseries of a mother and son leading a hostile life.  Auraeus Solito’s movie ‘The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros’ sketches the life homosexuals.

  All these seven movies in the Philippine cinema section symbolize the real and true happenings in this island nation with distinctively wonderful themes.

Buffing up for the film gala

Buffing up for the film gala
Anila Backer P
Lakshmi Vijayan

Eleven theatres in Trivandrum had a face-lift recently. They are the ones identified for the screening of IFFK festival films.
  “The restoration work is over and the cinema houses are all set for the eight day gala. We had stopped the regular shows for maintenance works like dusting up the seats, swapping the faulty seats with new ones, servicing the equipment for projection  and painting the hall ”, said Soman Nair, the manager of the Dhanya-Remya theatre complex.
Edited By: RenjithR Nair

  The same hustle was shown by the government to make its theatres look spic and span. At the government-owned Kairali theatre a special canteen has been set up exclusively for IFFK. “We have arranged car parking facilities outside the cinema for the delegates and the roads outside the theatres have already been repaired”, said Gandhimathi Balan, the Vice Chairman of Kerala Chalachitra Academy.
  The theatres utilized the gap given by the film distributors’ strike to carry out a large chunk of the work. Moreover, the release of two Malayalam films has been postponed in view of the festival.
  Sreepadmanabha theatre which has always remained a cut above the rest claims to have come up with cushy cotton seats and better cleaning techniques this time.
  Unfortunately, despite all the arrangements being made at  the theatres, there are still chances of complaints cropping up regarding the hygiene in the theatres  due to littering of food particles. But this problem can be tackled only with the cooperation of the delegates. “Cleaning is indeed a difficult task as the audience refuses to go out after the screening, waiting for the next” said a theatre official.

Take 3

Take 3

Gearing themselves up for the annual feast of films, a few seasoned enthusiasts put across their takes on the 16th edition of the International Film Festival of Kerala.

  Baiju Chandran , Film Maker and Asst. Director, Doordarshan says Latin American and Iranian films top his priority list.  "Of all the films from the world cinema category, I always find myself seated for Latin American and Iranian films. Because I feel Indians can best identify themselves with the aesthetics and geography of these films. The kind of magical realism conveyed through films has twice the reach compared to reading writers like Marquez." Retrospectives and packages always come into focus due to  its scope, both in the theoretical and practical discourse. The 16th IFFK has been in the news of late, because of the notable  absence of Malayalam films in the Competition category. “It is unfortunate, to miss out an opportunity to present Kerala before the international jury for the  festival”, he said.
  P. Baburaj, Film Maker and Critic says though he don’t find much of a vibe with in the competition section, the Kaidan classics and retrospective of Theodoros Angelopoulos is something which he is looking forward to. Rather than the regional films, it is the Retro and Package section that carry the essence of a festival.

  “However, in the context of the ongoing political appraisals in the Arab world the ‘Arab Retro’ section is likely to draw in a considerable amount of delegates” he adds. Baburaj thinks that had it not been affected by an administrative lapse, that ended in the rejection of a film and cancelling of an entry, there would have been a worthwhile presence from Malayalam. Apart from the administration, a mellowed approach from the delegates can also contribute to the success of the film festival.

  Sports based packages as a different entry to the festival ground is one of the specialities of 16th IFFK.  Sreebala K Menon, Writer and Film Maker says that It excites her most that there is an entirely new retro in this IFFK, Kicking and Screening, something which she really looks into. Sports based films, though regularly featured in film festivals, a whole new package of sports films is something new.  Arab films also top her priority list, due to the difference in its making. Normally films are done in a created atmosphere but with Arab films it happens that off hand shots and scattered visuals are put together to form a work of art.

DEFA films on post war Germany

DEFA films on post war Germany

The wounds, angst and hopes created by a wall are expressed in the DEFA package. Eight films from old East Germany showcases the socio-economic-political dilemmas of the post war Germany which will truly be a journey through the history.

  Helke Misselwitz’s ‘After Winter Comes Spring’ explores the exemplary formulations of the hope of a political, economic and above all artistic opening in East Germany in the backdrop of Berlin Wall.  ‘Girls in Wittstock’ by Volker Koepp tells the story of women and girls about their work in the textile industry, their spare-time occupations, about their thoughts and feelings. Frans Buyens’ ‘Deutschland – Endstation Ost’ reveals the story behind the construction of Berlin Wall and consequences.
  The movie ‘The Architects’ directed by Peter Kahane ‘The escape’ by Hajo Baumgärtne. ‘The Legend of Paul and directed by Heiner Carow. ‘The Sons of Great Bear’ directed by Josef Mach ‘Traces of Stones’ by Frank Beyer  are the other films in the category.

Live & Exclusive

Live &

Film festivals which deal with a wide variety of subjects, in a pluralistic society, deserves is not only a festival of films, but also the festival of culture- a festival of unity-the whole world under a roof. All the media in the city are in a fast pace in planning and executing a plethora of programmes to make their media a cut above the rest in rating.

   In Doordarshan, the mood of the festival starts with the curtain raiser programme that was aired yesterday evening. Live coverage would be there for the first and last day of the festival. In private channels like Kairali, Reporter, Asianet, Manorama and Jaihind, entertainment news focusing on  IFFK is planned to be telecasted for one week. In addition, Asianet Cable Vision (ACV) has launched a full time news channel for reporting and is planning a collection of programmes to entertain their viewers to glue their eyes on the TV.

  Major English newspapers like The Hindu, The Indian Express, and The Deccan Chronicle are planning to cover on the different arrangements like the condition of theaters, film packages, accessibility of delegates etc. Mathrubhumi, Malayala Manorama, Kerala Kaumudi, Mangalam would be focusing on the artistic value of IFFK. Our media is all set ready for the extensive coverage of the film festival with special news bulletins and other programmes.

New designs; Subjective experiences

New designs; Subjective experiences

The posters, booklets and catalogues do a lot of talking. That is why the organizers of the film festivals always give great care to designing them. This year materials are no different.

  Many people still remember last year’s beautiful posters. This year, the posters are mainly in red and black. Last year’s dominance of green is replaced by a catchy bright red. Circles and squares give the poster a novel look, and a unified identity.

  The man behind this year’s design is Mr. Priyaranjanlal, a freelance designer. Experience gained from designing the festival book of previous years and a host of other similar creative endeavors gave him the confidence to take up the daunting task.

  This year a total of 1000 catalogues, 10000 posters, 3000 invitations, and 200 manuals have been printed. The impeccable execution of printing was done by Akshara Printers, Trivandrum.