Posts tagged ‘parallel cinema’

Jaman

Last week I used up my remaining two free tickets on Jaman. So from now on, I’ll be watching only short films, till I start earning some big bucks get myself a Mastercard. I have to say, Jaman is good. It’s repository is very rich and diverse. For people like me, it offers a new avenue to explore World Cinema and that too legally. The pricing also appears to be reasonable, at 1-2$ (approx INR 40-80). My knowledge of credit cards is zero, so perhaps there are some hidden expenses that I do not know about and you may end up paying more. Another thing I liked was the Social Networking features it offers. I have come across several enlightening discussions and well written reviews. I am not so excited, however, by the comments feature. In the three films I rented, comments were often mundane or congratulatory but rarely informing. Which is not to say I did not find any useful comments at all. In “The Stranger” for instance, a comment actually the significance of a dialog, a significance that I had missed. And in “The Home and the World” I was forced to relook at a scene after a commenter questioned a characters action. So its not exactly a redundant feature but a lot depends on the users. But after seeing the kind of user generated content on site I am sure it will become more significant.

The three films that I saw were, “The Seventh Horse of the Sun” by Shyam Benegal and “The Home and the World” and “The Stranger” by Satyajit Ray. I had a hard time picking out three films from a thousand others. My original intention had been to see some of World Cinema, that is, non American and non Indian films. But that changed when I stumbled upon NFDC’s profile. Here, was a stash of treasures from the Parallel Cinema movement of the 80s. Treasures that are impossible to find. This is what NFDC has to say about itself (on Jaman):

“National Film Development Corporation of India and its predecessor, the Film Finance Corporation, have funded or produced over 300 films in various Indian languages that have won acclaim and awards in India and worldwide.

The NFDC movies include work from the country’s top directors, including films from Satyajit Ray, the master director who brought Indian cinema to world recognition and won an Academy Award for lifetime achievement in 1992. Many are only on Jaman and are not available on DVD or VHS.

(bolds mine)

December 29, 2007 at 9:27 pm 2 comments


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