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Mary Kom amongst list of Special Presentations at Toronto International Film Festival

Written by on July 24th, 2014

Piers Handling, CEO and Director of the Toronto International Film Festival, and Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of the Toronto International Film Festival, announced the first round of titles premiering in the Galas and Special Presentations programmes of the 39th Toronto International Film Festival in a press conference yesterday.  Though Cameron Bailey assured that further announcements […]

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TIFF Special Review: Qissa: The Ghost is a Lonely Traveller (dir. Anup Singh, 2013)

Written by on September 14th, 2013

Set in post-Partition India, Qissa (“Folktale”) introduces us to Sikh patriarch Umber Singh (Irrfan Khan). Forced to leave his village (in Pakistan territory), Umber takes his family (consisting of his wife, two daughters, and a newborn baby girl whom he refuses to look at – “I’ve seen enough girls,” he tells his wife, Mehar) and […]

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TIFF Special Report: Shuddh Desi Romance Press Conference

Written by on September 11th, 2013

A press conference was held in advance of the Gala Premiere of Shuddh Desi Romance at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 11th, 2013. The press conference was moderated by Toronto producer Mohit Rajhans and attended by one of the film’s stars, Parineeti Chopra, along with director Maneesh Sharma, writer Jaideep Sahni, and Avtar […]

TIFF Special Review: Siddharth (dir. Richie Mehta, 2013)

Written by on September 10th, 2013

Canadian director Richie Mehta follows the success of his 2007 film Amal (which also screened at the Toronto International Film Festival and went on to win numerous awards) with this emotional and devastating story of a Delhi chainwala’s search for his missing son. Mahendra Saini (Rajesh Tailang) has sent his 12-year-old son Siddharth (Irfan Khan) […]

TIFF Special Review: The Lunchbox (dir. Ritesh Batra, 2013)

Written by on September 10th, 2013

“The 5,000 or so dabbawalas in the city have an astounding service record. Every working day they transport more than 130,000 lunch boxes throughout Mumbai, the world’s fourth-most-populous city. That entails conducting upwards of 260,000 transactions in six hours each day, six days a week, 52 weeks a year (minus holidays), but mistakes are extremely […]

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TIFF Special Review: Goopi Gawaiiya Bagha Bajaiiya (The World of Goopy and Bagha) (dir. Shilpa Ranade, 2013)

Written by on September 6th, 2013

It’s hard to imagine a film that would stand up to Satyajit Ray’s 1969 film Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne (based on a story by Ray’s grandfather, Upendrakishore Ray), but book illustrator and animator Shilpa Ranade manages to do just that with her animated version, Goopi Gawaiiya Bagha Bajaiiya (The World of Goopy and Bagha), screening […]

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TIFF Special Review: Faith Connections (dir. Pan Nalin, 2013)

Written by on September 3rd, 2013

“My father told me,” says director Pan Nalin, “I should travel to the ultimate pilgrimage of Hindus, Kumbh Mela, and fetch him a bottle of holy water. He told me that the Kumbh Mela is the biggest gathering on earth, and there I shall feel the force of faith that connects us all.”  Nalin decides […]

The Toronto International Film Festival 2013

Written by on August 18th, 2013

Over the past few weeks, the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) began unveiling the films that will feature as part of this year’s festival line-up.  Although this year features fewer films from India and the Indian diaspora (not surprising since last year’s focus on Mumbai in the City to City programme gave viewers an incredibly […]

FRAMING MOVIES Take Twenty: Barsaat (1949)

Written by on July 26th, 2013

“Love, star-crossed love, being in love with the idea of love, passion and lust — he takes me through his personal repertoire of romance, his voice soft, if a bit gruff at the edges.” — Madhu Jain on Raj Kapoor in her book The Kapoors: First Family of Indian Cinema In Barsaat, two rich city […]

Ship of Theseus Movie Review

Written by on July 18th, 2013

Ship of Theseus is the first feature film from director Anand Gandhi, and, as its title   suggests, it explores the philosophical concept of the paradox of Theseus.  As described by the Greek philosopher Plutarch, the paradox is this:  if an object has any or all of its parts replaced, does it remain the same […]

FRAMING MOVIES Take One: Raja Harishchandra (1913)

Written by on April 21st, 2013

During a year when Indian Cinema is celebrating 100 years since the first moving picture was made, the writers of BollySpice have decided to put together a feature series which pays tribute to this phenomenal and charismatic industry. Titled ‘Framing Movies’, this special series during the course of 2013 will chronicle and assess some of […]

REFLECTIONS 2012: Films you should have seen in 2012

Written by on January 6th, 2013

2012 turned out to be a year when a number of smaller or independent films made their way onto many Top Ten lists. But, as always, there are films that, for a number of reasons, risk being forgotten or overlooked, especially in a year where there are so many great films to choose from. Here […]

TIFF Cinematheque: Indian Expressionism

Written by on November 15th, 2012

On the heels of the Toronto International Film Festival with its focus on the films and filmmakers of Mumbai, the TIFF Cinematheque presents, as part of its fall offerings, a series on the relationship between German Expressionist films and those of Indian cinema pre-Bollywood.  Renowned Indian cinema curator Meenakshi Shedde presents a programme that highlights […]

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TIFF Special: Miss Lovely Movie Review

Written by on September 14th, 2012

Documentary filmmaker Ashim Ashluwalia makes his transition to feature films with this story of the two brothers, Sonu (Nawazuddin Sidiqqui) and Vicky (Anil George) who work making lurid and sleezy (and highly illegal, given the censorship and repression of the times) schlock horror and porn films in 1980s Bombay. Vicky is the ambitious one of […]

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TIFF Special: Peddlers Movie Review

Written by on September 14th, 2012

Vasan Bala’s first feature film, Peddlers, follows the lives of three unrelated individuals whose lives gradually intersect: Mac (Siddharth Menon), a streetwise orphan who deals drugs and does odd jobs; Bilkis (Kriti Malhotra), a young former chemistry teacher with cancer who comes to Mumbai to work as a drug mule, and eventually gets work in […]

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TIFF Special: The Bright Day Movie Review

Written by on September 14th, 2012

“Isn’t it unfortunate that you still don’t know where your heart lies?” says Shiv’s father to him. Shiv’s parents are worried about him. At twenty-three he is coddled and a little cocky, and totally aimless. But Shiv agrees with his father, so it’s perhaps not surprising that he sets off on what turns into a […]

TIFF Special: Gangs of Wasseypur (Part 2) Movie Review

Written by on September 10th, 2012

Part 1 of director Anurag Kashyap’s sprawling family saga of power and revenge did two very important things: it introduced the character of Faizal Khan (Nawazuddin Siddiqui), and it left me with a definite appetite to see Part 2. I had the chance to do just that a screening held in advance of the presentation […]

TIFF Special: Shanghai Movie Review

Written by on September 10th, 2012

“He didn’t understand how it had happened. Undoubtedly he never would. These moments are like shooting stars. They pass before us, leaving only a luminous trail impossible to decipher. Where do they come from? What do they plunge toward?” From the novel Z by Vassilis Vassilikos A controversial political activist fighting the displacement of people […]

TIFF Special: Ishaqzaade Movie Review

Written by on September 10th, 2012

Ishaqzaade (“Love Rebels”, rechristened “Born to Hate, Destined to Love” for TIFF2012) tells the story of Zoya (Parineeti Chopra) and Parma (Arjun Kapoor), and is set against the backdrop of the political wrangling that divides their two families. “Here comes Ms. Earthquake,” says Zoya’s father of her when she arrives home after using her gold […]

TIFF Special: Ship of Theseus Movie Review

Written by on September 7th, 2012

Ship of Theseus is the first feature film from director Anand Gandhi, and, as its title suggests, it explores the philosophical concept of the paradox of Theseus. As described by the Greek philosopher Plutarch, the paradox is this: if an object has any or all of its parts replaced, does it remain the same object? […]

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Red Chillies and Anurag Kashyap Films part of Toronto International Film Festival’s Asian Summit

Written by on August 13th, 2012

The Toronto International Film Festival revealed more details about its planned Asian Summit, which takes place on Monday, September 10th, at the Shangri-La Hotel in Toronto. It was no secret that the guests of honour would include internationally renowned actor, director and producer Jackie Chan, and it was revealed today that Harvey Weinstein, co-Chairman of […]

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