I had my first taste of international cinema last week when I went to see a few films at the Asian Film Festival at the NFAI. (Free passes thanks to Siddharth :-) ) Having read a lot about Irani cinema, I really wanted to see one. So, I was pretty happy because I got a chance to see two Irani films 'Color of Paradise' and 'Children of Heaven' and a film from Afghanistan called 'Osama'. I wasn't keen on watching 'Osama' but was forced to do so by Siddharth. Thankfully, the film turned out to be awesome. It made me thank his stars that I live in urban India. The film is about a girl who has to disguise as a boy in order to earn a living, under the Taliban rule. Even though I had some inkling about the appalling living conditions in Afghanistan under Taliban, watching them on film is quite shocking. Suddenly, George Bush's talk about giving freedom to oppressed people made some sense. Recommended for everyone.
The two Irani films were a delight to watch. I had expected the films to be slow and 'arty'. The films were nothing like I expected, they were simple tales told in a very nice manner (somewhat like R.K. Narayan). The films were technically brilliant with some great photography and lighting. The first film 'Color of Paradise' was about a blind boy and his world, while the second film 'Children of Heaven' was about two siblings living in a poor family who have to manage with a single pair of shoes amongst them. The two lead actors i.e. the kids were very good. Both the films were directed by the same director Majid Majidi. Incidently, his film 'Baran' is currently being shown in Inox.
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