URI’s India Film Festival continues with focus on women, Bollywood

KINGSTON, R.I. – October 19, 2009 – A girl’s experiences during the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947, the Westernizing of India’s youth and the transformative effects of a terminally ill boy on two doctors are among the themes of the next screenings of the India Film Festival at the University of Rhode Island.

Part of the Demystifying India Honors Colloquium at URI, the festival continues Friday Oct. 23 and Saturday, Oct. 24 and Friday, Nov. 13 and Saturday Nov. 14. All showings are free and open to the public. The films are either in English or Hindi with English subtitles, and all will be shown in Room 304, the Screening Room of Swan Hall, 60 Upper College Road. As a public health precaution, the University asks those with influenza-like symptoms on the day of the event not to attend.

Rebecca Romanow, a lecturer in the URI Film Studies Program, organized the festival.

Here’s the schedule:

Friday, Oct. 23,

Earth, 6 p.m., directed by Deepa Mehta, 1998. Through the life of a girl and her family, the audience will experience the violence that erupts as the partition of India and Pakistan occurs. The film follows the girl, her family and neighbors as they struggle to remain neutral. A romantic rivalry and other matters of daily life are eventually engulfed in battles among Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs.

Paap (Sin), 8 p.m., directed by Pooja Bhatt, 2003. In this thriller, Kaya has dreams of joining the monastery in her village. But she is called upon by the religious leaders to bring back a special little boy to fulfill their ancient prophecies.

Saturday, Oct. 24:

• Ek Din Achanak (Suddenly one Day), 1 p.m., directed by Mrinal Sen, 1989, Based on a story by Ramapada Choudhury, this highly personal drama tells of a sensitive academic who leaves his house one evening and never returns.

• Salaam Bombay!, 3 p.m., directed by Mira Nair, 1988. An international critical favorite by director Mira Nair, the film examines the wretched social conditions of the street urchins of Bombay by filming on location and selecting most of the cast from the local population.

Spotlight on Bollywood films Nov. 13, 14

The big dance and music numbers, the expansive casts and sets, the themes of romance, family conflicts, humor and sometimes happy endings are the ingredients of the final part of the series, Bollywood Films, Friday, Nov. 13 and Saturday, Nov. 14. Here’s the lineup:

Friday. Nov. 13

• Andaz (Style), 6 p.m., directed by Mehboob Khan, 1949. This major musical hit speaks against the westernizing of Indian youth and the mistaken notion of love created by close friendship.

• Anand, 8:30 p.m., directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee, 1971. This hit launched a wave of ‘70s Indian melodramas in which the hero endures a terminal illness.

Saturday, Nov. 14

• Deewar, 1 p.m., directed by Yash Chopra, 1975. Two brothers, abandoned by their father and raised by their mother, grow up to take jobs on opposite sides of the law, leading to tragic results.

• Loafer, 4 p.m., directed by David Dhawan, 1996. This comedy focuses on slacker Ravi and his family as they relocate to a new city to escape a corrupt local government.

For further details about the film festival and other colloquium programs, including an updated schedule and information on parking, go to www.uri.edu/hc or contact the URI Honors Center at 401-874-2381 or debg@uri.edu.

Major colloquium sponsors are: The Honors Program, Office of the President, Office of the Provost, College of Business Administration, College of Arts & Sciences, College of Engineering, Division of University Advancement, The Anthony J. Risica Lecture Series on Innovation & Entrepreneurship, and The Village Inn – Narragansett.

Additional sponsors include: College of Human Science and Services, College of the Environment and Life Sciences, Office of the Vice President for Administration, Office of the Vice Provost for Information Technology Services, University College, URI Diversity Week-Multicultural Center, URI Women’s Studies Program, The Mark and Donna Ross Honors Colloquium Humanities Endowment, Kabob N Curry – Providence, and Professor G.S. Verma and Mrs. R. Verma.