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       BFI London Film Festival begins on 4th of October
         Posted on :08:44:58 Sep 15, 2017
       Last edited on:09:15:04 Sep 15, 2017
         Tags: BFI, London Film Fest, begin, Oct 4

A silent film with 89 years of history will be the highlight from India- Shiraz: A Romance of India. From documentary to feature film, there is a good cross section of films from India at BFI London Film Festival.

Shiraz: A Romance of India

Saturday 14th October 8pm at Barbican

Taj Mahal love story “Shiraz: A Romance of India”, the 1928 silent epic film from India, will be screened as archive gala. The live music score of Anoushka Shankar, the famous sitar player and daughter of Ravi Shankar, will accompany the screening.  

Shot entirely on location in India, it features lavish costumes and gorgeous settings, including the extraordinary fort at Agra. This remarkable UK-Indian-German co-production was wholly Indian in conception: the brainchild of star and producer Himansu Rai, based on a play by Niranjan Pal and performed by an all-Indian cast. Rai himself plays humble potter Shiraz, who follows his childhood sweetheart Selima (Enakshi Rama Rau) when she is sold by slave traders to the future emperor (Charu Roy). Selima catches the eye of the prince, but finds a bitter rival in an ambitious favourite (Seeta Devi) from his harem. Shiraz, meanwhile, is fated to design the queen’s iconic mausoleum. The restoration by the BFI National Archive and Dragon Digital has significantly improved the picture quality of the film. A new score commissioned by the BFI from world-renowned sitar player and composer Anoushka Shankar will be performed live with an ensemble of musicians playing Indian and western instruments.

Azmaish: A Journey Through the Subcontinent

Thursday 05 October 2017 18:20

BFI Southbank, NFT2

Friday 06 October 2017 13:00

ICA Cinema, Screen 1

Pakistani director Sabiha Sumar and Indian actor Kalki Koechlin traverse their countries to examine a radically changing political landscape and the rise of intolerance. Sabiha Sumar returns to the LFF with an incisive and personal search for the future of her country, wondering how she, as a modern woman, fits into that society. She questions the genesis of Pakistan, soon delving into her ancestral roots in India. Accompanying her, Kalki Koechlin engages in a discussion that encompasses modern life. The conversations between the two women and their encounters with political figures and ordinary people gives rise to a personal and poetic search to uncover the voices of the silent majority, particularly those of women. This film reveals new perspectives on how peace can exist between the two neighbours, once divided by Partition. But as Sumar argues, it also shows the countries travelling on a similar path of religious extremism.

Beyond the Clouds

Friday 13 October 2017 20:40

Embankment Garden Cinema

Saturday 14 October 2017 11:30

Embankment Garden Cinema

Set in the slums of Mumbai, acclaimed director Majid Majidi delivers a powerful coming-of-age tale about a brother trying to save his jailed sister. Risk-taking Iranian director Majid Majidi, best known for his Oscar®-nominated Children of Heaven, moves to Mumbai for this stunning feature. Appearing in his first film, Ishaan Khattar gives an extraordinary, high-energy performance as Aamir, a teenage roustabout. He makes the most of his life of fast bikes and dodging trouble while dealing drugs across Mumbai’s dockland underbelly. And yet, behind the hedonism is a young man desperately missing his family. Following a drugs bust, Aamir ends up on the doorstep of his estranged sister Tara. She lives alone and is constantly harassed by men. The siblings try to live together in the apartment, but a past clouded by loss and despair makes it difficult. However, when Tara almost kills a man who attempts to rape her and ends up in jail, she suddenly finds in Aamir her one hope of seeing the outside world again. Alongside his gifted cast, Majidi is working once again with cinematographer Anil Mehta, who captures India’s urban landscape with a breathtaking sense of awe. And the immensely talented, Oscar®-winning composer A R Rahman (Slumdog Millionaire) provides a richly nuanced score.

The Brawler

Wednesday 11 October 2017 20:30

Vue Leicester Square Cinema, Screen 7

Friday 13 October 2017 17:40

Rich Mix Cinema, Screen 1

A young and talented Indian boxer dreams of being champion, but is knocked sideways when he falls for the niece of the man blocking his road to success. The acclaimed director of Gangs of Wasseypur delivers another knock-out with his new feature. Talented boxer Shravan trains relentlessly to achieve his dream of becoming a champion. But things go awry when he falls in love with strong-minded Sunaina, niece of the head of the state boxing federation. Despite beatings and threats, Shravan is determined to marry Sunaina. However, it is conditional on his winning the boxing championship and securing his future. That seems unlikely with Sunaina’s uncle blocking his every move. It looks like he will have to choose between his career and the woman he loves. Vineet Singh’s charismatic performance and Anurag Kashyap’s thrilling cocktail of street fights, bawdy ballads and punchy females ensures The Brawler hits home with every entertaining blow.

Om Dar-B-Dar

Saturday 07 October 2017 13:00

BFI Southbank, NFT3

The UK premiere of India’s legendary underground cult classic finally reaches our screen, fully restored, 25 years after it was made. Om Dar-B-Dar is a fantastical portrait of life in a mythical small town. It tells the story of Om, a young boy enjoying the carefree moments of his adolescence and enduring its harsher disillusionments. Om has an eccentric family. His father quits his government job to dedicate himself to astrology, while his older sister just can’t stop dating a good-for-nothing. Om is interested in science, but also finds himself attracted to magic and religion. Above all, it seems as if his only outstanding skill is his ability to hold his breath underwater for a long time. A genre-bending satire, Om Dar-B-Dar mashes philosophy, popular culture, politics and mythology into a maddening cinematic work that has been referred to as the great Indian LSD trip.

Bookings now open for public:

Telephone: 020 7928 3232 from 10:00-20:30 daily
In person: At BFI Southbank from 11:00-20:30 daily

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