Film Festival „Bollywood and beyond“: The Tweets
In July, I visited the sixth Indian film festival „Bollywood and beyond“ in Stuttgart and sent short reviews to Twitter. The tweets apparently got lost during one of the many Twitter crashes – since they originated at identi.ca, I was able to save them (I included some trailers):
Kaler Rakhal (IND 2009): Artificially naturalistic movie about criminal politicking in rural Bengal. *** of *****
A Wednesday (IND 2008): Exciting bomb scare thriller with questionable message. Great as always: Naseeruddin Shah & Anupam Kher. ****
Dohaa – Dark Waters (IND 2007): Depressing Marathi movie about growing pains of a rural girl. Shown without subtitles :-( . **
„Shaurya“ is the 2nd movie w/subtitles missing. Presenters don’t notice.
Shaurya (IND 2008): Decent remake of Marshall Court thriller „A Few Good Men“ (I guess – my Hindi is lacking ;-) ). ***1/2
Delhi 6 (IND 2009): Touching & funny ensemble piece about a homecoming to New Delhi. Wonderful music by the great A.R. Rahman. *****
Yarwng – Roots (IND 2008). Tragic but sweet love story among displaced villagers in a tribal area of NE India. Beautifully shot. ****
Tahaan (IND 2008): A cute movie by Santosh Sivan, starring Anupam Kher and Rahul Bose. It’s about an eight-year old boy, his donkey, and Kashmir terrorists. Surprisingly, it works! *****
Rock On!! (IND 2008): Enjoyable feel-good movie about a rock band’s reunion. ****
Two documentaries on the food industry: „Seeds of Dissent“ (uneven) & „Mad Cow, Sacred Cow“ (a must-see which will make you mad, too).
Luck by Chance (IND 2008): Star-studded dramedy with sharp dialogue and lots of movie in(dustry)-jokes. Bollywood at its best! *****
Billu Barber (IND 2008): Silly, uneven comedy about a village barber who claims he knows visiting superstar Sahir Khan (Shahrukh Khan). **1/2
Antaheen (IND 2009): Two hours of rambling about love, life, loneliness, and business; with songs in between. Dull & pretentious. **
Sorry Bhai (IND 2008): Love triangle comedy with paint-by-numbers script & direction, shot in Mauritius. Some enjoyable moments. **1/2
Mumbai Meri Jaan (IND 2008): Seen it at River to River. Florence Indian Film Festival already (December 2008). Intelligent take on 7/11 attacks in Mumbai. ****
Samaantar (IND 2009): Slow-moving, poetic Marathi film about an industrialist who lost his spark for live. Lovely music. ****
7 Days in Slow Motion (IND 2009): My festival favorite. Hilarious, yet thoughtful comedy about schoolboys shooting a movie. *****
Red Alert: the War Within (IND 2009): Gripping, differentiated story of a laborer mixed up in fights between Naxalites & cops. *****
The jury award „German Star of India“ goes to „Narmeen“ (shorts), „Superman of Malegaon“ (documentaries).
The audience picked my personal favorite as best movie: „7 Days in Slow Motion“.
„Tahaan“ gets the jury award „German Star of India“ as best feature movie. Another good choice!
Anant Mahadevan („Red Alert: the War Within“) receives the „Director’s Vision“ award. According to him, the dialogues of „Red Alert“ are authentic (based on interviews with Naxalites and cops).