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River to River. Florence Indian Film Festival Full program

9th River to River. Florence Indian Film Festival
4-10 December 2009
Odeon Cinema - Piazza Strozzi
Florence, Italy
Herewith the full line up of films.

FRIDAY 4 DECEMBER

6.30 pm - Museo Marino Marini, Piazza S. Pancrazio, Florence
Exhibition opening Raja Ravi Varma, the artist who changed the facet of gods, curated by Giovanni Aprile

8.30 pm - Cinema Odeon, Opening Evening
Performance of the Apsara Dance Group and Opening Film
Rang Rasiya (Colours of Passion), Ketan Mehta, 120’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2008
Great director Ketan Mehta tells the life of the famous Indian painter Raja Ravi Varma: from the love story with his muse Sugandha to the fundamentalist reactions to his paintings, regarded as immoral portraits of the gods of Indian mythology.
After the film Q&A with director Ketan Mehta


SATURDAY 5 DECEMBER

3.00 pm
In Search of Guru Dutt, Nasreen Munni Kabir, 85’, col. and b/w, hindi and english - italian and english subt., dvd, UK-India, 1989
A tribute to Indian director, actor and producer Guru Dutt who committed suicide in 1964, aged just 39. This documentary tells his life through interviews with his relatives and closest collaborators, looking at the deep bond between his life and his works.

5.00 pm
Aar Paar (This or That), Guru Dutt, 146’, b/w, hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 1954
A former taxi driver just out of prison, the daughter of a garage owner and a band of criminals who want to rob a bank are the protagonists of a genre film where Dutt draws inspiration on French-style polar to offer a tapestry of the society in which it is set.

8.30 pm
Barah Aana (Shortchanged), Raja Menon, 97’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2008
The film tells about a contemporary Mumbai in which the lives of a chauffer, a watchman and a waiter happen to entwine together. Being accomplices in a crime accidentally committed by one of them leads them astray, and the situation soon gets out of their hands …
After the film Q&A with director Raja Menon

11.00 pm
A Heaven on Earth, Deepa Mehta, 106’, col. and b/n, hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., Canada, 2008
The last film of the famous director Deepa Mehta is about Chand, a Punjabi girl who moves to Canada for an arranged marriage. Her initial enthusiasm for the new country soon makes way to a deep feeling of isolation, but her friendship with a workmate gives her access to a world in which the boundaries between reality and imagination are blurred and a way out is still possible.



SUNDAY 6 DECEMBER

11.30 am - Odeon Cinema
Tea talk with Paolo Scarnecchia
The songs in Guru Dutt: the modernity and innovation of production.

3.00 pm
Mr. and Mrs. 55, Guru Dutt, 157’, b/w, hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 1955
An ebullient comedy involving a middle-class girl forced to get married to inherit a fortune, her feminist aunt, and a penniless comic-strip writer who is prepared to make a marriage of convenience followed by a timely divorce. An almost perfect plan…

6.00 pm
Short Films 1
Vitthal, Vinoo Choliparambil, 24’, col., marathi - italian and english subt., betacam, India, 2008
Boond, Abhishek Pathak, 27’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., digibeta, India, 2009
A Hindu’s Indictment of Heaven, Dev Khanna, 12’, col., english - italian subt., digibeta, Canada, 2009
Rites of passage and revelations: a twelve-year-old who feels humiliated by a ritual he has to undergo, control over water as a metaphor of social interaction in an Indian village, and cynical - and Hindu - glance at a romantic conception of eternal happiness.
After the films Q&A with director Dev Khanna

8.30 pm
Khargosh, Paresh Kamdar, 94’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2009
The story of an overwhelming love seen through the eyes of a child who acts as a go-between between a boy and a girl who exchange passionate letters but are unable to communicate in person. A coming-of-age film, the delicate portrait of what it means to grow up.

10.30 pm
Barah Aana (Shortchanged), Raja Menon, 97’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2008
The film tells about a contemporary Mumbai in which the lives of a chauffer, a watchman and a waiter happen to entwine together. Being accomplices in a crime accidentally committed by one of them leads them astray, and the situation soon gets out of their hands …



MONDAY 7 DECEMBER

4.30 pm
Children of God, Yi Seung-jun, 90’, col., nepali - english subt., digibeta, Korea-Nepal, 2008
Pashupatinath, Nepal, is home to thousands of children who, every day, attend the funeral ceremonies taking place along the Bagmati river. In a setting where the dead are looked after better than the living, the children of God make a living by stealing the offerings off the corpses that are thrown into the river.

6.00 pm
Wagah, Supriyo Sen, 14’, col., hindi, parsi and urdu - english subt., digibeta, Germany-India-Pakistan, 2009
Every day, thousands of people attend the rite taking place in Wagah, a borderland between India and Pakistan.

6.30 pm
Mad Cow Sacred Cow, Anand Ramayya, 53’, col., telugu - english subt., digibeta, Canada, 2008
Leaving Canada where his in-laws have a small cow farm and arriving in India where cows are considered to be sacred animals, the director sheds light on the deep relations between the mad cow disease, the crisis of small breeders and the problem of global hunger.

8.30 pm
Kaminey, Vishal Bhardwaj, 125’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2009
A Tarantino-like pulp movie about two twins who grow up in the slums of Mumbai. One of them has a speech defect, the other stammers. Different life choices set them apart, but fate reunites them, and together they face politicians, scoundrels, drug pushers and corrupted policemen.

11.00 pm
Khargosh, Paresh Kamdar, 94’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2009
The story of an overwhelming love seen through the eyes of a child who acts as a go-between between a boy and a girl who exchange passionate letters but are unable to communicate in person. A coming-of-age film, the delicate portrait of what it means to grow up.



TUESDAY 8 DECEMBER

11.30 am - Odeon Cinema
Talk. India: women, men, sex, gender.
Moderator: Fabrizia Baldissera, Florence University
Speakers: Franco La Cecla, anthropologist, EPFL of Lausanne; Antonella Rondinone, Siena University; Neelam Srivastava, Newcastle University

3.00 pm
Kagaaz Ke Phool (Paper Flowers), Guru Dutt, 153’, b/w, hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 1959
The rise and fall of director Suresh Sinha who, left by his muse, Shanti, falls in a state of deep depression and gets hooked on alcohol. This is Dutt’s most autobiographical film and a bitter reflection on filmmaking.

6.00 pm
The Aryan Saga, Sanjeev Sivan, 30’, col., english, dv, India, 2009
Ladakh is still home of people of Aryan descent, the offspring of Alexander the Great’s army who crossed the region in the IV century BC. Every year, dozens of German women go there to have an Aryan child in return for money and presents for the inseminator-father. This documentary explores the political and emotional aspects of this saga.
After the film Q&A with director Sanjeev Sivan

6.45 pm
Short Films 2
Andheri, Sushrut Jain, 22’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., digibeta, India-Usa, 2009
Topi (The Cap), Arjun Rihan, animation, 7’, col., punjabi - italian and english subt., digibeta, Usa, 2009
Français langue étrangère (French for Foreigners), Kartik Singh, 13’, col., french, english and arabic - italian and english subt., digibeta, France, 2009
Poised lives and encounters of different cultures: a young woman who has to choose between freedom and a reassuring normality, a Hindu child who crosses the border between Pakistan and India, and the debate on the Islamic scarf in a city like Paris.
After the films Q&A with director Kartik Singh

8.30 pm
Little Zizou, Sooni Taraporevala, 101’, col., hindi and gujarati - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2008
The first film by Sooni Taraporevala, Mira Nair’s award-winning screenwriter, the film tells the story of two rival Parsee families headed by the fanatic Khodaiji and publisher Pressvala. One of the protagonists is eleven-year-old Xerxes Khodaiji, a football fan who dreams of meeting Zidane, and his older brother Ataxerxes, a talented artist who is in love with Pressvala’s daughter.
After the film Q&A with director Sooni Taraporevala and actress Iyanah Bativala

11.00 pm
Kaminey, Vishal Bhardwaj, 125’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2009
A Tarantino-like pulp movie about two twins who grow up in the slums of Mumbai. One of them has a speech defect, the other stammers. Different life choices set them apart, but fate reunites them, and together they face politicians, scoundrels, drug pushers and corrupted policemen.




WEDNESDAY 9 DECEMBER

6.00 pm
Makers of Tales, Nina Sabnani, 22’, col., hindi and rajasthani - english subt., dv, India, 2009
For centuries, the people of Bassi Chittorgarh, Rajasthan, have been making kavads, portable wooden shrines that illustrate the feats of the founders of the local communities. A tradition shared by both makers and tellers who verbally hand down the stories which would otherwise go lost.

6.30 pm
Ganesh, Boy Wonder, Srinivas Krishna, 76’, col., telugu - english subt., digibeta, Canada, 2009
A couple of Indians pray Ganesh to have a son. The child soon arrives but he happens to have an elephant-like nose, just like the Elephant God. The story is told on TV and gets round the world, until a Canadian doctor of Indian descent decides to deal with it.

8.30 pm
A Heaven on Earth, Deepa Mehta, 106’, col. and b/n, hindi - italian and english subt., 35 mm., Canada, 2008
The last film of the famous director Deepa Mehta is about Chand, a Punjabi girl who moves to Canada for an arranged marriage. Her initial enthusiasm for the new country soon makes way to a deep feeling of isolation, but her friendship with a workmate gives her access to a world in which the boundaries between reality and imagination are blurred and a way out is still possible.

10.30 pm
Little Zizou, Sooni Taraporevala, 101’, col., hindi and gujarati - italian and english subt., 35 mm., India, 2008
The first film by Sooni Taraporevala, Mira Nair’s award-winning screenwriter, the film tells the story of two rival Parsee families headed by the fanatic Khodaiji and publisher Pressvala. One of the protagonists is eleven-year-old Xerxes Khodaiji, a football fan who dreams of meeting Zidane, and his older brother Ataxerxes, a talented artist who is in love with Pressvala’s daughter.




THURSDAY 10 DECEMBER

5.00 pm - student films
Narmeen, Dipti Gogna, 18’, col., hindi and punjabi - italian and english subt., dvd, India, 2008
When this Man Dies, Arun Sukumar, 22’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., dvd, India, 2008
News, Sarvesh Mewara, 18’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., digibeta, India, 2008
Lihaaf, Rohan Sonawane, 20’, col., hindi - italian and english subt., digibeta, India, 2009
The four best films by the students of the Film and TV Institute of India and the Whistling Woods International Institute for Film, Television, Animation & Media Arts.

6.30 pm – animation films
63’, col., english, dv, India, 2009
The most interesting works of AnifestIndia 2009 and the Ahmedabad National Institute of Design.

8.30 pm
Award ceremony of the River to River DigiChannel Audience Award
Screening of the three winners of the second Advantage India, the competition for 3 minute short films.

9.00 pm - Closing Film
Sita Sings the Blues, Nina Paley, animation, 82’, col., english - italian subt., betacam, Usa, 2008
In this hilarious animation film, three puppets tell the ancient and modern tragicomedy of Ramayana. Sita, the goddess, is forced to live far from her beloved husband Rama, while director Nina has to face the separation from her partner who has moved to India.

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