Don't Miss These Films at Third-i

November 11, 2008

"Kala Pul": (Thursday Nov. 13th, Brava Theater, 7 p.m.) I would highly recommend checking out this 40-minute Pakistani-noir film for its attempt at intersecting global politics with your usual noir denizens: wronged prodigal son, femme fatals with good connections, and militant Taliban sympathizers. I'm not sure the film quite comes together at the end, but it really gets you thinking about Pakistan in a different way than films like "A Mighty Heart," which only focus on one side of things. Also, the soundtrack by Dr. Das and Janaka Selecta are awesome. San Francisco-based director Sajib Mausoof discusses the film on his blog.

"The Sky Below": (Friday Nov. 14th, Brava Theater, 7:30 p.m.) A few years ago, I read Urvashi Butalia's "The Other Side of Silence: Voices from the Partition of India" and some of the disturbing and horrific stories are still fresh in my mind. In this film, Sarah Singh spent two years (as a one-woman crew) shooting the 150 hours of footage that she transformed into this beautiful and thought-provoking 75-minute documentary investigating Partition in a similar way to Butalia. Singh's shots of Northern India, Pakistan and Kashmir are breathtaking. There were times I found the film a little too focused on talking heads, but the stories are not to be missed. Check out Sarah Singh's blog here, that dates back to when she was shooting the film in 2006.    
"Laksmhi and Me": (Saturday Nov. 15th, Castro Theater, 1:45 p.m.) An amazing, personal documentary by Mumbai-based filmmaker Nishtha Jain about her relationship with her 21-year-old housemaid Lakshmi. Jain's self-conscious filmmaking really allows her to dig into the strange connection educated, middle class Indian women develop with their hired help. Lakshmi, as the film's main subject, really allows the camera into her private moments and inner thoughts. I found this film to be incredibly gripping, suspenseful, emotional and beautiful.
And it will be awesome to see Danny Boyle's "Slumdog Millionaire" at The Castro on Sunday night. I'll weigh in on the political and cultural implications of Boyle making this film after I see the movie on Sunday. 

This blog entry is graciously sponsored by Toyota Matrix. Check out their website dedicated to the best in Asian American film.

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