Saturday, November 30, 2013

15th Madurai Film Festival 2013: Films from Tamilnadu : Short films

15th Madurai International Documentary and Short Film Festival 2013


1.       Vakri Chokku
Dir: Krishnamoorthy; 13mins; Vakri & Tamil; 2013; India

Maruvan, (7years) having lost his mother at a very early age, lives with father Kasi, (29years) a Narikurava tribal making his living by hunting and selling wild birds. Maruvan is sent to a primary school but always comes back demanding for more facilities like new school shoes. Father tries to sell his catch but unfortunately, that month being auspicious nobody buys meat. One day Maruvan begins questioning his father about the right for every being to live and to be loved including the birds that his father hunts. Now Kasi has to find an answer.

2.      Maayai Nizhalkal
Dir: Venkat; 14mins 17sec; Silent; 2013; India

A boy from a small village gets his hands on bit of a film reel. Fascinated by his discovery and driven by his curiosity, he imagines what it is like to experience cinema. He turns his imagination into reality with passion, which can come only from love for cinema.

Friday, November 29, 2013

15th Madurai Film Festival 2013: Retrospective Section

15th Madurai International Documentary and Short Film Festival 2013

6-10 Dec, Madurai

Retrospective Section:
Films by Pankaj Butalia

Pankaj Butalia was a national level table tennis player who, later, taught Economics at Delhi University before he took to making films. He has made eleven documentaries and one fiction film. Most of his documentaries have been screened extensively throughout the world and one of them, MOKSHA, won four major international awards in 1993-94. His first feature film, "Karvaan" won a special award at Amiens in 1999 and has been screened in film festivals in Venice, Toronto, Rotterdam, Belgium, Hong Kong, Turkey, New Delhi and Calcutta among other places.

Pankaj Butalia has been a juror in a number of film festivals including Chairman, Jury, Himal Documentary Film Festival, Kathmandu, 1997 and Member, Jury, Oberhausen Short Film Festival, Germany 1990 among many others.

1.      Moksha   -   (Salvation)
Dir: Pankaj Butalia; 80mins; 1993; India

Abandoned by their families to lives of penury, marked by white veils which they wear, Bengali widows find solace and food in the ashrams of Vrindavan where they gather every morning and evening to sing religious songs.
In this profoundly moving documentary on widowhood portrayed both as social institution and personal tradition, moments of astonishing sensuous beauty alternate with rhythms of anguish. In the best of the new ethnographic tradition, Moksha de-centers the voices of authority and allows a plurality of voices to introduce contesting positions.
Haunting in its evocation of grief and anger, the film transcends documentary and assumes its place in the great tradition of lamentation, the expression of the dark night of the human soul.

2.      Tracing the Arc
Dir: Pankaj Butalia; 2003; India

The Great Arc was a phenomenal achievement of applied science in British India between 1802 and 1843. It was an attempt to measure the curvature of the earth's surface under the guise of cartographic and military necessity. The film attempts to recreate the stupendous effort and look at some of its implications.

3.      A Million Steps
Dir: Pankaj Butalia; 2003; India

In the 1860's, the British, keen to know the terrain of Tibet in case the Russians invaded India through Lhasa, trained Indian surveyors to disguise themselves, enter Tibet and carry on surveys incognito. Over the next twenty years, many Indian surveyors, known today as the 'Pundits', entered Tibet disguised as monks or traders and carried out the most authoritative surveys of their times and contributed to the map of Asia. This film is a short documentary attempting to look at the adventures of three of these surveyors.

4.      Karvaan (Shadows in the dark)
Dir: Pankaj Butalia; 100 mins; 1999; India

A feature film drawing upon the partition of India. Starring Naseeruddin
Shah and Kitu Gidwani, the film looks at the immediate impact of partition on a few lives. It then looks at the protagonists about twenty years later to see if there has been any way in which the events of the forties could have impacted their lives.

5.      An Island of Hope
Dir: Pankaj Butalia; 26 mins; 2010; India

A school started by the Chakma refugees in a remote part of Arunachal Pradesh in India looks set to dramatically change their lives.

6.      Kahani Ek Gaon Ki
Dir: Pankaj Butalia; 26 mins; 2012; India

An experiment in a small peri-urban area of Rajasthan, India, where the village gets involved in issues of self-governance and heritage preservation.

7.      The Textures Of Loss
Dir: Pankaj Butalia; 60 mins; 2013; India

Kashmir has been one of the world’s major conflict areas for over two decades. For many ordinary Kashmiris this level of upheaval was completely unexpected. The killing of family members, whether by the Army or by militants has been something that people have not been able to come to terms with. Many families live in a limbo – surviving on a day to day basis – with nothing to look forward to – with no hope except that of bare survival.

15th Madurai Film Festival : Inauguration

15th Madurai International Documentary and Short Film Festival 2013

Organised by MARUPAKKAM

6,7,8,9,10 December 2013

Opening Ceremony
6 pm; 6 Dec 2013
Prem Nivas Hotel, Melaperumal Mestry Veedi, Madurai

Chief Guests:
Pankaj Butalia, Filmmaker (New Delhi)
Dr.Murali, Principal, The Madura College
Kathir, Human Rights Activist
Yadhartha Rajan, Film Society Activist
Paravatha Varthini, Activist

Opening Film:

Kanche Aur Postcards (Marbles and Postcard)
Dir: Ridham Janve; 29 mins 55secs; Hind with English subtitles; 2013; India

Kanche aur Postcard is an everyday, lighthearted story of a schoolboy wanting and being denied a game of marbles while on vacation. Seen through the young protagonist’s eyes, though, it is a story full of drama; with deeply felt rejections, difficult choices and unfortunate compromises.

All are welcome!

More than 100 films are screened under the following sections:
1) International Films
2) Films from Rest of India
3) Films from Tamilnadu
4) Retrospective: Films by Pankaj Butalia

Amudhan R.P.
Festival Director

15th Madurai Film Festival


6-10 December 2013
Prem Nivas Hotel; 5 pm to 8 pm

6 Dec: Friday
Mannar Thirumalai Nayakkar College, Pasumalai; 10 am to 5 pm
Department of English, Gandhigram Rural Institute - Deemed University, Gandhigram; 2 pm to 5 pm

7 Dec: Saturday
Sermathai  Vasan College, Perungudi: 10 am to 5 pm

8 Dec: Sunday
IDEAS Centre, Vazhaithoppu; 10 am to 5 pm
Littles – A Centre for Children, Nagamalai; 2 pm to 6 pm

9 Dec: Monday
Department of Folklore, Madurai Kamaraj University, Nagamalai; 10 am to 5 pm
Yadava College for Men; 10 am to 5 pm
Department of Tamil, Devaangar Arts College, Aruppukottai; 10 am to 5 pm
RVS College of Education, Dindigul; 2 pm to 5 pm

10 Dec: Tuesday
Vellaichamy Nadar College, Nagamalai; 10 am to 5 pm
St. Justin’s College of Education, Teppakulam; 10 am to 5 pm
Department of Sociology, Fatima College; 2 pm to 5 pm

For further details: