Archive for the ‘Marathi’ Category

Ever since the Sairat jukebox has hit YouTube, music aficionados can’t seem to rave enough about the duo for an outstanding soundtrack. And both of them truly deserve all the praise that they are getting. What marks Ajay-Atul (henceforth, A-A) distinct from rest of the Marathi composers is their ability to bring fresh sounds in Marathi music consistently.

Sairat seems to have taken them to new heights of popularity, noticeably among the non-Marathi crowd. This post is my tribute to both of them, whose music I have followed since 2002, even before they made it big in Marathi.

A-A became a household name with their song  Man Udhaan Varyache, from the film ‘Aga Bai Arrechya!’ The entire soundtrack was topnotch and something that Marathi music hadn’t heard before. Man Udhaan was the Roja moment for Marathi music scene. Since then, they have produced some amazing soundtracks in Marathi (and I am a bit put off by their Hindi songs). This is my list of must listen Ajay Atul songs that will give listeners an idea of the range of genres and styles that A-A have worked with. The songs are listed in no particular order.

(all songs hyperlinked. click on the titles, will open in new window)

Ajat Atul

Kunjavanachi Sundar Rani (Aga Bai Arrechya, 2004) – This song is a historic tribute to Marathi film music, that traces its evolution from the early B&W days to 90s. The first section is a tribute to early days of Prabhat films. The second section moves to the next phase in Black and White era of Marathi films, which distinctly reminds of the era made popular by actors like the iconic Jayshree Gadkar. The third is perhaps a tribute to the then neo-color era that had a lot of OP Nayyar-ish sound. Next the song moves into the Dada Kondake era, where double meaning songs and comedy ruled the Marathi cinema industry. The last section is a definite reminder of the era of Marathi cinema that was ruled by Laxmikant Berde and Ashok Saraf.

Khel Mandala (Natrang – 2010) – Listen to this for Ajay’s soul stirring voice. Actually, the entire Natrang OST was a musical masterpiece and a must listen for those who want to get glimpse of Tamasha styled Marathi music. This music was so famous once upon a time that in 80s and 90s, doing Tamasha based films had become a genre. Ajay, in an interview, recounted that during his struggle days, he used to sing as a chorus in Tamshas, also doing the high pitched voices for the effeminate male characters called the Nachyas. The protagonist of Natrang, Guna Kagalkar, was one such famous Nachya.

Lallati Bhandaar (Jogwa – 2010) – Again, playing in their familiar terrain of folk, Lallati Bhandaar was an iconic song, drawing influences from the Jogtin community, or the group of females in service of God in areas of Karnataka Maharashtra border. The other song from this was Jiv Rangala (sung by Hariharan and Shreya Ghoshal) and won A-A a national award.

Navari Ali (Tujhya Majhya Sausarala Ani Kay Hava – 2008) – Navari Ali is a wedding song that borrows influences from Gujarati folk repertoire. A-A used claps and an instrument called Daaka to give a unique texture for the rhythm used in this song. Also, do checkout Chang Bhala and Swarg Ha Nava from the same film.

Chimb Bhijlele (Bandh Premache – 2007) – A sweet romantic song sung by Shankar Mahadevan and Priti Kamath.

Ghe Sawarun (Ringa Ringa – 2010) – This another soul stirring song, sung by Sukhwinder Singh and reminds of the Punjabi folk song genre made popular by singers such as Surinder Kaur.

Cycle Ekki (Shock – 2006) – A perfect dance number by A-A from a telugu film Shock. The film was produced by RGV. RGV has been a great admirer of A-A and had said that though he is an atheist, listening to A-A’s album Vishwa Vinayakam made him feel like a devotee to almighty.

Malhar Vaari (Aga Bai Arechya – 2004) – Malhar Vaari is song based on the Gondhal singing tradition in Maharashtra. The Gondhal troupes are invited to perform during auspicious occasions like wedding.

Morya Morya (Uladhaal – 2008) – Perhaps the most famous song from Uladhaal and from overall Ajay-Atul repertoire, Morya Morya was the timely reminder that Ajay-Atul would rule the Marathi music scene with their eclectic sounds. This song was such an adrenaline booster! Also, listen to De Na Paisa, sung by Kunal Ganjawala, which is quite a departure from A-A’s usual style.

Kalabha (Vishwa Vinayaka – 2001) – People going crazy over the western symphonies that A-A have used must listen to the entire Vishwa Vinayaka soundtrack. This was A-A’s first commercial album and one which slowly surged to popularity. Their much loved song, Shree Ganeshay Dheemahi, which was later used in Viruddh was originally from this album.

Sajavun Sanj Ashi (Aata Ga Baya – 2001) – An acapella from Ajay Atul sung by Hariharan and Mahalaxmi Iyer.

Mauli Mauli (Lai Bhari – 2014) – The only song that stood apart in this otherwise mediocre album. If one has seen the ‘vaari’ or been a part of it, one can instantly relate to this song. Also, though it is the usual bhakti music genre, the rhythm pattern that Ajay Atul used in this song was quite a departure from the stereotypical bhakti songs in Marathi.

– Kaustubh Naik

Nobody knew Nagraj Manjule when his debut feature, Fandry, released. It got rave reviews and made it to our “Must Watch” list. Our recco post on Fandry is here. But this time there was lot of expectations from him as Sairat is his second feature. He delivers and how! Here’s our recco post on the film by Dipti Kharude.

The film has released all over with English subs. Don’t miss.

sairat-hero copy

As I write this, I’m listening to the heady soundtrack of Sairat. The feeling of being in a music video with a bright Dupatta fluttering behind is hard to shake off. That is the naivety of love and that is our good, old desi way of spinning a yarn. We have perhaps forgotten that song and dance can make important contributions to the narrative of our films. They can accentuate agony and ecstasy, introduce characters, and allow them to express themselves in a way that would sound contrived as dialogue. In that vein, Ajay-Atul are to Sairat what Irshad Kamil has been to Imitiaz’s films, and more. (They have composed the music, written the lyrics and sung songs for the film).

In Sairat, the boy gets a song, the girl gets another and then there’s a duet. The last song, which is a prelude to the ugly turn of events is also a subtle nod to the Romeo-Juliet balcony scene where the protagonist, Archie, daughter of the powerful upper caste Patil is dancing in the veranda upstairs and Parshya, a fisherman’s son from the Pardhi community is dancing outside the house. This, like many other visuals establishes a hierarchy without screaming ‘caste’. Manjule uses this dreamy narrative to set us up. He pulls us in with promises of hackneyed romantic epics only to shows us the realities that were missing in films like QSQT and Saathiya.

Films are not about issues but about people living their lives. Good stories are the ones where the theme is subliminal. Sairat doesn’t go gently into the night, though. Manjule’s fiery outrage is muted in the first half only to smack us in the gut at the end. Its triumph lies in the fact that Manjule doesn’t depend on an art house aesthetic to create this impact. He relies on mainstream cinema to do the job.

In the most familiar tropes, he manages to question norms.

It is refreshing to see a girl in a rural set-up drive a tractor and be the knight in shining armour spouting quips like “Marathit samjat nai, tar English madhe sangu?” (If you don’t understand what I’m saying in Marathi, should I repeat it in English?) If the first half were a Bhai film, she would be Salman. Manjule subverts by making Sairat more about the heroine’s quest than that of the hero’s. This film makes you revise your image of small-town/rural girls. They want to take agency over their own lives. The female gaze in Sairat is not the terrible flip side of the usual hetero male gaze, which typically fetishizes women. It is like a celebration of female desire.

He creates joyous moments in the hinterlands of the Solapur district of Maharashtra. This milieu is almost conspicuous by the lack of it in Bollywood – a ladder to climb the makeshift pavilion during a match, the privileged son cutting his birthday cake with a sword, a lady barging unapologetically on the field during a cricket match and yanking her son away to keep watch over the livestock and the unfurling of a courtship against the backdrop of wells and sugarcane fields.

In Sairat, the issue of ‘casteism’ is not at the forefront but its consequences are. The privilege of being the daughter of an upper caste strongman empowers Archie to be badass. Despite the entitlement, Archie endears with her rebellion. She is unabashedly flirtatious and brandishes a raw frankness. She reprimands Parshya for referring to his physically inadequate friend as ‘langda’, in jest. Manjule is interested in dismantling many other structures where the contours of discrimination may change but the hierarchical outlook stays the same. It is this advantage that Archi struggles to relinquish in the second half. Once she frees herself of the power that comes with privilege and strives on an equal footing with Parshya, she evolves.

While doing all of this, Manjule does not strike a single false note. Archie may have valiantly used a gun while escaping but that doesn’t prepare her to drink unfiltered water. The scene where Archie and Parshya quench their thirst after disembarking the train is telling.

In the gritty second half, the main characters come undone with their frailties. Even the charming Parshya succumbs to his insecurities. Slow motion sequences are traded in for rapt stillness and silences. They begin to realize their happily-ever- after dream and are even economically empowered to buy a flat in a more egalitarian city.

Apparently, class inequality is surmountable but it is the caste inequalities that cast a long shadow.

SPOILER ALERT

Honour killing is a common narrative but Manjule draws you in and makes you drop your guard. You can sense the robust command over his craft when you laugh during an awkward scene just before the ghastly climax.

ALERT ENDS

The more diverse ways we have of telling mainstream stories, the more likely audiences will find something that speaks to them. What better way to spur a discourse?

Dipti Kharude

12717978_960774084010240_4121770988795033499_n

I know Marathi just like I know Guitar and Keyboards. I can sense their presence but can never play with them (publicly) because I don’t understand them. My exposure to non-Hindi film music has been similar. My Marathi music ‘plays’ have been limited to the music of Shala, Balak Palak and Natarang. Cut to the first teaser of Sairat that I came across, and all of that changed. I have since then tried to explore Ajay-Atul’s work in depth, and most of it has been in Marathi, but more on that later. With absolutely no comment/interpretation on the lyrics of this film album, here is what I think of the album that hit me like a bolt of lightning!

Yad lagla is decorated so well as a composition that even before Ajay gets behind the microphone you would be swaying at those definitive violin riff repeats. Not only in the opening, violins are almost a second voice throughout the song. Even when we hear Ajay in antras, we can hear those violins and they are in no way bothersome to ears. A song that to my ears sounds like musings of a man madly in love. A song extremely high on melody.

Part college-festy (like Koi Mil Gaya from Kuch Kuch Hota Hai) and part Kannum kannum (from Thiruda Thiruda), Aatach baaya ka baavarla’s high points are those variations that Shreya takes in both the antras. The pause in between is only an excuse to hit the listeners with those layered percussion and strings almost immediately. Like I said, Shreya is top class in the song be her biting ‘attacha’ in every antra or her tempo variation. The backups reminded me a lot about ARRahman and his use of backups in 1990s, especially in the film, 1947 – Earth. An insanely enjoyable song!

In what soothes like a balm to the senses, Chinmayi Sripada starts Sairat zaala ji, and is almost immediately joined by Ajay. The song flows like a symphony and the overall mood doesn’t weigh you down because the antras are playful and easy on ears. I did feel the percussion could have been a bit lighter in the song. The flute in the second part of the song is all sorts of cute and the bagpipe parade like tune in between is actually smart. I felt the song gave more room to Ajay to improvise than it did to Chinmayi.

What is clearly, unabashedly and LOUDLY a celebration song, Zingaat is Ajay-Atul playing in their familiar territory. It is exactly *that* song which would haunt us Bombay-walas in the coming days whenever there is *any* celebration. The song has brass band as well, but you really don’t notice their presence because of the constant *dinchak dichak*. Length wise, this is the shortest song of the album, but impact wise, probably the song that will outlive the film, in Maharashtra.

Ajay-Atul’s symphonic inclination is well known, so much so that back in 2002, they came out with an album titled ‘Ganesh Symphonic Chants Experience’ which is quite something. Some kind friends have passed me the music of films like Natarang and Jogwa, and it suffices to say that the sound of Sairat is a step forward by Ajay-Atul in terms of marrying their favourite sound with the limitations that a typical ‘film album’ presents them with. Thumbs up for that!

I just have one grouse –  if not checked, Ajay-Atul can quickly sink to where our favourite ‘It’ boy went – using their own voice a bit too much in their albums.

Overall, this is the album that I have heard the most number of times vis a vis any out and out non-Hindi album that I have laid my hands on in the last couple of years. The madness that this album infected me with reminded me of film album by ARRahman titled ‘Boys’ that came out long time back.

When I heard Jogi, I wanted to learn Kannada

When I heard Jhiri jhiri chaitali, I wanted to speak Bengali.

When I heard Nenjukulle, I wanted to understand Tamil.

Sairat makes me want to write poetry in Marathi..

It is exactly the kind of music that makes you want to pay for it, twice! The album costs just 48 bucks on iTunes. Buy it, celebrate it. It’s well worth it!

Rohwit

Jukebox of Sairat here

We have always tried to spread the good word about various crowd-funded projects through our blog. Here’s one more film which looks interesting and you can contribute to its making. In today’s Fund A Film (FaF) initiative, we are putting the spotlight on Marathi horror film, Episode 13.

cover-1024x589

Episode 13 is a Marathi horror film in found-footage genre. According to its makers, it’s a first of its kind in Marathi language.

Episode 13 revolves around a TV crew who are in a village to shoot their non-fiction TV show. The 13th episode of the show is about a family who has not come out of their house since the last 8 years. There are various myths, versions, and rumors in the village about this family and the haunted house. The TV crew is there to unravel the mystery and expose the truth.

Yogesh Raut, producer-director of this film, raised shooting funds by himself. Now, after completing the shooting and editing, the makers are crowdfunding through Wishberry to finish the posrt-production. You can contribute to the film and make it happen.

Here’s the pitch video of the same

And click here to go their wishberry page for more details and to make a contribution. You can contribute from Rs 2000 up to Rs 2.5 lakh.

 

sachin-pilgaonkar-shankar-mahadevan-katyar-kaljat-ghusali-movie-pic

Knowledge is acquired.
Art is inherent.
Knowledge solves complexities.
Art gives birth to those very complexities.

There is a whole scene dedicated to this Knowledge V/S Art (Vidya V/S Kala) debate in Katyar Kaljat Ghusli — and it is easily my favourite part in the movie. A musical maestro’s protege aches for knowledge. The knowledge that can hone his skills, set him apart. But he completely overlooks the fact that even without the knowledge, what he already has within him — the raw art of music — is far more valuable.

Anybody who has grown up in a typical Marathi household has heard their mothers and fathers sing Ghei Channd Makarand. It won’t be blasphemous to say that it is our equivalent of a Bachchan or Tagore poem, if not as widely popular. So when the film adaptation of the cult musical, Katyar Kaljat Ghusli, was released, all of us got a call from home urging us to go see what a spectacle it is.

And I’m happy to report that it has lived up to the hype. The plot is simple: Pt. Bhanushankar of Vishrampur (Shankar Mahadevan) discovers Khan Sahab (Sachin Pilgaonkar) in one of his mehfils and brings him back to his town. But Khan Sahab’s talent always ranks below Pt. Bhanushankar’s, and a fierce sense of competition starts to rise within him. Competition culminates into sabotage and Pt. Bhanushankar loses his voice as a result of a vicious scheme. As Khan Sahab settles into the comforts of the palace and new his designation of the Royal Singer, Pt. Bhanushankar’s protege, Sadashiv (Subodh Bhave) enters the scene to win his mentor’s honour back.

The most interesting thing about Katyar… is the use of music. It feels as important to the anatomy of the film as a limb (props to writer Prakash Kapadia, who has emerged as the master of the Indian epic. His next is Bajirao Mastani). While most films about music add songs just to authenticate the genre (here’s looking at you, Aashiqui 2), Katyar’s music takes the narrative forward and keeps you glued to your seats even through songs. While Ghei Channd will always remain a favourite, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s Sur Niragas Ho and Yaar Illahi could easily become the next generation’s favourites.

I may be at a disadvantage, having not seen the original musical, but my father tells me that the film was about 80% true to the source material, which is not a bad percentage at all. The dialogue is dense with beautiful lines about music, art, the value of commitment, envy and the evil in one’s heart. Shankar Mahadevan appears to be surprisingly comfortable in his role and Subodh Bhave — with his ability to be believable as Anybody — is honest. Sachin Pilgaonkar has walked away with the lion’s share of compliments, but I can never shake the feeling that his brand of acting is similar to Aamir’s — where, with each movement and each gesture, he wants you to know just how good he is. Frankly, he overdid some scenes, but let’s not focus on that.

The good thing is, the movie has released with subtitles and, for once, the person who has done the subtitling deserves a pat on the back. They have masterfully turned colloquial Marathi phrases into English lines, and successfully translated the humour when required.

Yes, the plot is predictable and spoon-fed to viewers, but if you’re in for a true musical with hair-raising compositions embedded into the story, and the magic of simple storytelling as well, this is your pick.

Nihit Bhave

(Nihit Bhave is a freelance writer based in Bombay. Was Features Writer with Hindustan Times’ Sunday magazine, HT Brunch until recently)

Three

 ‘Bring me a dish to satiate my mind and I am happy.’

No, no one great said that, I just made it up coz I wanted to begin with a bang. But that doesn’t mean it is untrue. Kaul, a feature length indie film has had me quite, quite excited since a few days now.

It’s rare a film excites me so much, makes me think so much. So exploring, enquiring, digging, labelling, un-defining…it goes.

Kaulin several cultures, means a call to the divine. It also means higher order or social class. It also means a man of high breed. It also means a purpose or profession. It also means a promise.

How simple is simple?

We live in a world where everything is codified perfectly into two neat brackets, cause and effect, black and white, this or that. Human existence today, is an argument of versus. But simple is a unifying agent, it is a unifying philosophy and has no place for duality. Then?

The task of our times then is to deconstruct. And integrate. To arrive at the core that is simple. Kaul is something like that.

A young man in a small town in Konkan murders a woman and moves to a smaller village. He takes up a job as a teacher, marries and is living a seemingly uneventful life when he undergoes an experience he cannot accept or reject. It is something he cannot define; it is surreal and drives him to the edge of sanity (as defined by common majoritarian understanding). He sets out seeking answers, peeling layers until he arrives at the core.

Mystical? Maybe, but this is not a saintly story of a man’s enlightenment and struggles with it. It is the story of Nietzsche’s ‘Ubermensch’, Camus’ ‘Outsider’, and the 21st century common man experiencing the dark night of his soul fraught with anxiety.

If he kills like Camus’ Stranger and goes off like a being in search of his super-hood, then like our 21st century man he veers towards the confines of psychiatric classifications, depending on the only rules he seems to be made of. ‘Shut me up if I become a threat to the society’, he pleads earnestly, believing himself to have gone bonkers; his classification of insane and normal as binary as the debate between the physical and the metaphysical. In this honesty lies the thread of his search, the honesty that compels him to ensure his road must not end in annihilation of others also leading him to explore the power that lies in that very thought of violence. Is that where ultimate freedom lies?

What if you could just snap your fingers and the world would come to an end?

And what if your redemption lay in it? Through it?

That kind of power is threatening. Life-threatening. Two moves and the torture would end. And it would be a good deed. Or would it be? We are back to polarising.

But it is touch and go, this playing with polarisation, because as is essential, one must quickly leap to integration, from linear to the cyclical, from separation to unification, if one has to arrive at the meaning of existence. In the womb of birth is the seed of death and in the heart of death the first call for creation. Something cannot be destroyed until completely built and cannot be created until it is not completely annihilated. The pendulum has to swing to both extremes to arrive at its true balance. Let me drop the ‘true’ and just say balance. It is simple.

To peel off the layers of our consciousness and definitions of art then, the film throws off layers after layers of myths and faux-labels, crystallising the knowledge, the visual and sound (literally and metaphorically!) in an attempt to integrate sensory experience with emotional resonance in the audience. As the protagonist starts his journey in search of answers we are taken into another world where the physical echoes the metaphysical. The play of day and night, darkness and light, sounds and silences create a universe that is tactile and immersive, daylight exposing the extreme dullness of the regular and darkness the mysteries of the obvious. With this, Kaul gently plays on our senses as it tantalises us to follow the protagonist to find out what is this bat-shit craziness that has descended upon him suddenly.

Two

Do we need the Master?

Needless to say, he finds a guru; the film evoking a Campbell-like mono-myth pattern of a hero’s journey, from afar a simplistic narrative principle, from close quarters simple. As he tries to seek the tutelage of one seemingly mysterious old man another layer of polarity opens up. Along with several other myths the old man also rejects the myth of the ‘guru’, hinting at the infiniteness of the self to find its own way out of this ultra-real world. The role of the seeker as a primary school teacher suddenly gains credence. ‘This whole Guru-Disciple thing is bogus’, roars the old man in defiance, decrying the tradition of looking outward, and by that pushing the protagonist to look within.

He urges him to listen to birds for messages decoding his path.

And what will I find?’ the seeker asks in anticipation.

‘Nothing. You will find nothing. But only after knowing that will you be able to accept it. There is nothing to find.’

A group of philosophers, writers and artists were once asked, ‘Why are we here?’ John Cage famously replied, ‘No why, just here’. Let’s pause here a bit.

Integration is not mathematics, but then maybe it is.

From a distance, there is a danger of viewing and interpreting Kaul as a fable, it is anything but that. Rather it could almost be interpreted as a pataphysical take on the business of spirituality. With a firm belief in the power of self, the film almost cocks-a-snook at the common dialectical understanding of experiential truth and the mysterious secret of man as super-being

Even though interpreting Kaul as a fable would be reductive, there is a certain temptation to do so, given the structure and form it chooses to take. It’s magic realism is Kafkaesque, dark, mysterious and anxious, very anxious. It is mystical and formless, evolving as we go, but it is in enquiry that our existence and the film lies, as embodied by the seeker and that which is being sought. That is the spirit of the film hence its fable-like veneer dismantles before it is fully built as the Kafkaesque intensity deepens, unshackling the viewer from the fluff of fantasy immersing him in the surreality of reality instead. Enquire don’t accept, seek don’t give up, trust your power do not let go of it; some of the ideas the film seems to be urging us to follow with little cushioning.

While merging the hero’s mono-mythical external journey with his internal one, the film adapts and adopts from several theisms and philosophies. Rooted in ancient Hindu philosophy is our mysterious old man, who suggests neti neti is the only path for the insane. In a caustic sweep he derides the modern-day formalist man steeped in illusory materialism and its limited definitions. Neti is a yogic path to enlightenment, propounded in Gnana Yoga and Advaita Vedanta, which emphasises on the rejection of all that is not the Soul and thus coming in touch with it. It is a path of deconstruction, one that nudges the shedding of layers of illusion and belief that we are mere mortals, to reach that germ of immortal within us.

Do what you feel like’ is the only answer the old man has for our angst-ridden protagonist. Hear the calling of honesty. From songs of experience the return to innocence.

It is believed that knowledge or ‘gnana’ was handed down through the alleys of memory, both physical (smriti) and divine (sruti). The Vedas, believed to be central canon of Hindu philosophy, are said to have been written through the assistance of divine memory. The oral tradition of India, (where sagely as well as worldly wisdom was disseminated through stories), and the guru-shishya codification of the same task, then seem to be derivatives of a deeper tradition born of the belief in sruti and smriti.

It is from these traditions that director Aadish Keluskar draws his narrative, borrowing a phrase T S Eliot used to describe the style of metaphysical poets, ‘yoking together’ the content with form in a meta-fictive universe. True to the oral tradition the old man hands down ancient knowledge to the protagonist. Is it from sruti or smriti? The film, like the old man, (its spokesperson almost), gives no ready answers. But there are answers embedded within, for which enquiry is required.

Kaul, bases its world-view, or rather other-world view on prominent philosophies and beliefs, collecting them together to make a base, a context. It then plays within this context of beliefs, pitting one against another to find a middle way. It’s almost like an examination, or experiment rather, of mating the best DNA of Nietzsche’s nihilism, Camus’ absurdism and Hindu spiritualism to free their core and it’s own. What emerges is the distilled idea of the Self. And the absoluteness of its power. From a dot we emerge and into the dot we dissolve, ending where we begin. Again and again, we just need to know it.

The atmosphere of darkness lies like a heavy pall on the film. It is full of bated breaths, the frames holding still in limbo, as anxious and paralysed as its protagonist who doesn’t know where to go from here. Just like neti neti, the structure of the film to arrive at its point is not this, not that. A constant negative reaffirmation. In an admirable example of metafiction, the physical form the film takes is to reflect the essence of its content. In many ways it subverts what we popularly know of the relationship between form and content and how it is practiced. In other ways it is the distilled approach of marrying both, the essence of simple. The old man refuses to provide easy answers to the protagonist pushing him on the path of neti neti and the film does the same to the audience. It is exciting to say the least, to catch clues and link up a path to the centre of the film.

When I reached there, the deepest I could, I found something interesting at the centre of the film. It pretends to be dystopian while it is very utopian and optimistic. Behind the obfuscating mystique, behind the nihilistic violence, behind the weariness of regular life, the film thrusts forth a strong belief in personal power, almost urging us to claim ours. Using violence, it liberates it from the baggage of destruction, leaving only the creative force behind.

one

Perhaps, the richness of the form and content is what I find so exciting in Kaul. The boldness of night photography allowing darkness to rule, the image crystallising as though in response to the call of plot, the soundscape reverberating with enigma, hinting at larger mysteries while guiding through them. It is with a certain intensity that the soundscape plays on the subconscious, informing the world of the film through vibrations, through variations, through space and vacuum, through noise and silence and through the gross and fine. This intensity and vastness of variation melts in with the world of the film, creating a supra-natural, almost physical experience of the protagonist’s journey for the audience.

‘Truth is rarely pure and never simple’ proclaimed Oscar Wilde. Neither is Kaul. It isn’t pure, it isn’t perfect and it isn’t simple. But it wins in nudging us to ask, in our lives and in films, what is simple?

Fatema Kagalwala

(Kaul will be playing at this year’s edition of Mumbai Film Festival and will compete in India Gold section)

Q and Umesh Kulkarni – two daring film-making voices from two different corners of the country, and whose films we always look forward to. And this time both of them seem to be trying something new which they haven’t done before. Q’s film is called Ludo and Umesh’s film is Highway Ek Selfir Aarpaar.

Q has directed the film with Nikon.

LUDO

Trailer :

Official Synopsis :

Four desperate teenagers. A night of sexy mayhem. The big city. Or so the plan goes, until a series of misadventures later, Babai, Pele, Ria and Payal end up in a locked shopping mall in the dead of the night. Alone at last… until an old couple appears out of nowhere with a piece of folded leather and a glass container with two dice made of bone. A game. Simple, but deadly. They call it Ludo. A game defiled by a young couple centuries ago. An unbreakable curse, a living board, eons of bloodbath spanning the subcontinent. A game that has reached this city. Not just monsters, but prisoners of fate. Immortal lovers existing under a curse that will not die. They live within the game. Blood must spill. Bone must shatter. Beware the rattle of the Ludo dice.

Cast & Crew

Rii, Tillotama Shome, Kamalika Banerjee, Joyraj Bhattacharya, Ananya Biswas, Murari Mukherjee, Ronodeep Bose, Soumendra Bhattacharya, Subholina Sen.

Directed By: Nikon, Q (Qaushiq Mukherjee)
Produced By: Celine Loop, Nandini Mansinghka, Q (Qaushiq Mukherjee), Tilak Sarkar
Screenplay : Nikon, Surojit Sen
Story Writer :Nikon, Q (Qaushiq Mukherjee)
Production Company(S) : Overdose Joint, Idyabooster, Starfire Movies

HIGHWAY

Trailer :

Official Synopsis

Highway is a film of that escape which all of us yearn for. It is an attempt to see our own reflections in today’s time.

Cast :
Girish Kulkarni, Huma Qureshi, Tisca Chopra, Renuka Shahane Rana, Vidyadhar Joshi, Mukta Barve, Sunil Barve, Mayur Khandge, Shrikant Yadav, Kishore Chaugule, Kishor Kadam, Vrishali Kulkarni, Purva Pawar