This 14-minute film talks about the Hindu god Brahma’s creation of life, the world and of course the first woman. Saeed Jaffrey narrates the story as dancers Bhaskar, Dinu and Anjali Devi “act” out the story.
Based on an autobiographical novelette by the well-known Kerala writer Basheer, this is a love story, set in a prison cell the 40s, between the imprisoned Basheer and a woman from the neighbouring prison compound. They are separated by a high wall so that they never see each other and have to devise ingenious ways of communicating. Produced for TV, the story is played out in confined spaces with a sense of claustrophobia and suppressed violence which enhances the emotional impact of the moving love story.
Mani Kaul’s film was funded by the Film Finance Corporation and an independent multi-arts co-operation led by noted painter Akbar Padamsee. Derived from a Rajasthani folk tale, it tells of a merchant’s son who returns home with his new wife only to be sent away on family business. A ghost witnesses the brides’ arrival and falls in love with her. He takes on the absent husband’s form an lives with her. She has his child, which becomes a problem when the real husband returns home. The film focusses on the wife’s life and dispenses with almost any dialogue developing the characters through parallel, historically uneven or even contradictory narratives.
Filmed in India, Rumer Godden’s story has been adapted and directed by the Jewel in the Crown team. Two English schoolgirls arrive in New Delhi, 1959. Their diplomat father has secured them a beautiful Eurasian governess. 15-year-old Una suspects an ulterior motive. But her father’s affairs take second place to her own when she has a secret affair with the Indian gardener.
Antonioni had a long fascination with India which gave way to this 1977 short capturing the country’s most important Hindu festival, Kumbha Mela, during which millions of worshippers gather to pray where the Ganges, Jamuna and Saraswati rivers converge. The film material remained unused until 1989, when Antonioni was convinced to edit it and to present it at the Cannes Festival.
Satyajit Ray’s short film Two shows an encounter between a child of a rich family and a street child, through the rich kid’s window. The film is made without any dialogue and displays attempts of One-upmanship between kids in their successive display of their toys. The film portrays the childlike rivalry with the help of world of noise and that of music.
In his debut feature film, Kumar Sahahani employs highly innovative forms for depicting the conflict between oppressive feudal norms and a changing industrial landscape while making female sexuality and its complex mindscape the focus. The protagonist, Taran, the younger daughter of a Rajasthani zamindar revolts against the social code set by the class system by a sexual encounter with an engineer. This film was one of the earlier and successful examples experimentation in colour during the advent of New Indian cinema.
Krishna alias Kris Sahani lives in New York, U.S., but decides to travel to his homeland in order to act in a movie. While Ricardo Fernandes leaves Sydney, Australia to travel to Bombay in search of his missing brother, Roger. And finally, Zeres Mistry, from London, England, also travels to Bombay to find his true love. The paths of all three Non-resident Indians cross in the taxi ride to Colaba, and they decide to stick together in their search for an apartment.