The Show Goes On

  • Publish Date: Jan 21 2018 9:35PM
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  • Updated Date: Jan 21 2018 9:35PM
The Show Goes On

With eight films by Kashmiris to be screened at the Mumbai International Film Festival, the state’s filmmaking boom continues


Building on recent cinematic successes, as many as eight films made by Kashmiri filmmakers will be screened at the annual Mumbai International Film Festival from January 28 to February 3. The films in Urdu, Kashmiri, Pahari and English will feature in the festival's “Films on Jammu and Kashmir, Special Packages”. 

It will be the first time since 2010 that films from Kashmir are screened at the MIFF, said Mushtaq Bala, whose film Kashmir Sofiyana Music is one of the entries. “This film is dedicated to the maestros of Kashmiri sofiyana music, which they nourished with their blood and sweat. Unfortunately, this glorious tradition is facing an uncertain future,” said Bala.  

Ayash Arif’s documentary The Boatmen of Kashmir is based on the life of local fisher people. “It showcases the social structure and the contribution of the Hanji community, especially to tourism,” said Arif. “It is an honour for me that the film will be screened there. I hope it sends a positive message regarding Kashmir and attracts more people to visit us.”

Kashmir into the Murky Waters is an investigative documentary directed by Tarique  Bhat and Wajahat Iqbal Kashtwari. Bhat said the film shows that the floods of 2014 were “avoidable had the people at helm of affairs anticipated the course of events”. It also has engineers, scientists and meteorologists explaining why the floods had turned so devastating. “We have shown this film at several educational institutions and now that it is being screened at the Mumbai festival, the altering of the ecological landscape of Kashmir will be highlighted on the international level,” he added.

Bilal Jan's Oh!She “is an experimental short documentary film without dialogue and is based on the trouble-torn region of Kashmir”. It juxtaposes the pain of a woman during childbirth with her suffering during the three decades of the Kashmir conflict.

The Lake Town, directed by Sana Irshad Mattoo is a short documentary on life on the Dal lake in Srinagar.

Ajay Raina's Apour Ti Yapour follows the lives of people living along the Line of Control. “The attempt was to go beyond the personal, to understand and address the question of Kashmir’s struggle for Azadi,” the film's synopsis reads.

The other films to be shown at the festival are Kashmir - Cradle of Secularism by Saquib-ur-Rehman and Her Theme of Freedom by Mohiuddin Mirza.

Mirza is also curating the films from Kashmir at the MIFF. “Films came from all directions and, happily, from the young,” he said. “They seemed urgent and filled with overwhelming enthusiasm, yet quite promising.”

Mirza said the J&K Special Package segment of the film festival will present a “cross-section of experiences and thought processes that Kashmir's filmmakers have lived through in these challenging times.”