In Magic Lantern Foundation’s third outing, cinema of “persistence-resistance” will play at the India International Centre from 25-27 February. Of the 89 films, Manjira Dutta’s The Sacrifice of Babulal Bhuiyan on the death of a colliery worker in Dhanbad, an old favourite in the documentary circuit, is expected be a major pull. Film-maker Amar Kanwar who brings his The Many Faces of Madness to the festival will share a Q & A session with Dutta soon after.
What’s new in this year’s festival? “The first two years looked at the emerging aesthetic of the Indian documentary,” says Gargi Sen, festival director. “This time, we are looking at art embedded in human struggle, notions of internationalism, and the need to stretch the definition of the ‘political’ to include the way we practise art…” To keep the film free, Magic Lantern, thus, plans to show films as installations, discuss it ‘In Conver-sation’, and do screenings in simulated video parlours.
The Advocate by Deepa Dhanraj, however, promises to be the festival’s talking point. It is a film on the life and work of human rights lawyer K.G. Kannabiran, who revolutionary poet Gaddar said, “was a man who for the past 35 years was not afraid to associate with Naxalites or even to mention them… But he also fearlessly criticised their mistakes”.
The neighbourhood is represented by Kesang Tsetsen’s films from Nepal, We Homes Chaps and In Search of the Riyal.
Also watch: Sarpat by Abhay Tiwari, Wagah by Supriyo Sen, The Last Rites by Yasmine Kabir. The fest is on from February 25-27 at the India International Centre, Max Mueller Marg; 9.30 am onwards, entry free.