IndiEarth OnScreen: A Tribute
The realm of Indian documentary cinema has seen several pioneers, whose contributions during the formative years of the discipline have had significant impacts on its evolution. One such pioneer is Indian documentary filmmaker S.Sukhdev. With a career spanning over two decades, Sukhdev has more than 60 films to his name and over 35 international and national awards. His work serves as an archival documentation of an emerging India – at times a critical voice that spoke with honesty, and not with the tone of state ordained propaganda that was rife in documentations of the nascent republic during the era.
The upcoming edition of IndiEarth OnScreen at Ashvita Bistro on Thursday, 5th of March pays tribute to this revolutionary filmmaker – his film And Miles To Go, as the description quotes, is “a scathing view on the inequalities of our young nation; Sukhdev, working within the state run Films Division went on to make a film that was far removed from propaganda”. This will be screened, along with his daughter Shabnam Sukhdev’s The Last Adieu – a tribute to her estranged father who died when she was only 14. Her film acts as both a tribute to the enigmatic Sukhdev, but also as a personal quest of his daughter to understand the figure that she struggled to love and respect for who he was. The film won the National Film Award for Best Historical Reconstruction/Compilation Film.
The BFlat Bar in Bangalore will also play host to IndiEarth On Screen this month on Sunday March 1st, with another maverick of Indian cinema – Pramod Pati. Often hailed as the godfather of experimental cinema in India, Pati created lush, symbolism rich pieces of cinema with unconventional approaches to form and narrative. Though he worked for the Films Division – which meant that subject choices were limited for filmmakers – the FD was a body free from commercial concerns, thereby presenting directors with more opportunities to engage in formal experimentation.
More details about the IEOS screening at Ashvita on the Facebook event page here
Like Sukhdev, Pati also died an untimely death at the age of 42, leaving behind a legacy created by his avant garde approach to cinema. This approach is showcased in his film Explorer, a film with no commentary but rich in symbols and expression relating to the theme Mission of Youth. This film will be screened first at BFlat, followed by filmmaker Siddhanth K.S’ Joint Trip – a film about two women and Gokarna, an exploration of understanding and realisations. The filmmaker and crew of the film will also be present for a question and answer session after the screening.
More details available about the IEOS screening at BFLAT on the Facebook event page here.
S. Sukhdev. Photographs Courtesy: Shabnam Sukhdev