Press Room

Posted by Magic Lantern Movies LLP on February 4, 2012

Filming a Filmmaker

Budhaditya Bhattacharya | The Hindu | 24 Feb 2014

At Persistence Resistance film festival this year, R.V. Ramani’s “Hindustan Hamara” provided an unusual variation on the theme of collaborations. The film, which follows Anand Patwardhan across several film screenings, is a visual conversation between the two filmmakers.

“Why I am terming it a visual conversation is because it’s a visual practice engaging with another visual practice,” says Ramani, adding that the goals and starting points of the two are quite different. Patwardhan, who has been making films since the 1970s, is associated with the political documentary. His films, which include Prisoners of Conscience , Father, Son and Holy War , Bombay Our City , War and Peace and, most recently, Jai Bhim Comrade , have tackled, among other subjects, the Emergency, communalism, slum demolition, nuclear disarmament, and Dalit politics. Ramani’s films, which include My Camera and Tsunami , Nee Engey and Nee Yaar , are, on the other hand, deeply self-reflexive.

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Lost and Found

Budhaditya Bhattacharya | The Hindu | 21 Feb 2014

Deepa Dhanraj is pleasantly surprised to learn that this reporter watched all of “Kya Hua Is Shahar Ko?”, her 1986 documentary, screened recently at Persistence Resistance Film Festival. Her reaction is understandable; it has been three decades since it was shot, and the work has passed onto another generation — one that was almost meant never to watch it.

As one of the first films to address the subject of communal riots, “Kya Hua Is Shahar Ko?” occupies an important position in the history of the Indian documentary. The lament that is inscribed in the title comes from the sense of passing Deepa experienced towards the syncretic and cosmopolitan culture of Hyderabad, the city she was born and grew up in.

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Making Every Frame Count

Debesh Banerjee | Indian Express | 19 Feb 2014

Vijaya Mulay was 18 when she moved from the liberal environment of cosmopolitan Bombay to Patna, after her marriage. “It was the ’40s and on my first day in the city, I rode a bicycle, there were street children running behind and mocking me,” says Mulay, as she sits at the Indian International Centre lawns, dressed in a bright hued Dharmavaram silk sari, where she was attending a screening of the Persistence Resistance film festival. She could not speak in Hindi or Bengali (necessary in Patna in those times), only knew Marathi and English, which meant her interactions with people were limited. There was little else to do but read and watch English movies at a nearby theatre on Sundays. “We (she and her husband) watched two shows for eight annas and after that we would analyse the films,” she says. Her husband’s stress on higher education led her to pursue a degree in education. “He told me that once India became independent, there will be a need for well-educated women. So I went to the UK in 1946 on a scholarship,” she says.

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Talking Cinema

Dipanita Nath | Indian Express | 16 Feb 2014

Persistence Resistance, a festival of short films and documentaries, returns to Delhi’s cultural calendar after an absence in 2013 with a changed perspective. Unlike the hundred films — many playing on the loop — that made up its line-up in previous years, the festival is now focusing on conversations with directors, with the number of screenings restricted to 24. Over the next four days, Persistence Resistance will host eight sessions with filmmakers, with three films by each filmmaker being screened daily.

“We decided to shift from screening-based to a conversation-based festival after observing that, in most festivals, sessions with filmmakers are relegated to the sidelines. There is a need for filmmakers and viewers to interact on practice, methodology and technological changes in filmmaking, circulation and viewing among others,” says Gargi Sen of Magic Lantern, the organisation behind Persistence Resistance.

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Bringing Documentaries and Dialogue on One Stage

Mahim Gupta | HT City (Delhi) | 16 Feb 2014

Some of the best socially relevant films and an engaging dialogue between filmmakers will find a common dais at a documentary film festival that starts in the Capital today. After a hiatus last year, Persistence Resistance is back in its sixth edition, bringing you documentaries in English, Hindi and various regional languages.

"The main focus of the festival is conversations between filmmakers and viewers. All documentaries will be followed by a dialogue, so that viewers can understand the filmmaking procedure," says Gargi Sen, filmmaker and organiser of the event.

Read full article [Choose e-paper of 16 Feb, HT Delhi, HT City, Pg 13]


Deepa Dhanraj | Justice league

Nandini Ramnath | Livemint | 15 Feb 2014

Deepa Dhanraj started making documentaries in the 1980s, is still at it, and continues to feel sufficiently provoked by the burning issues of the day to use words like “stunned” or “blown away” while talking about how she chooses her subjects.

“I feel like a dinosaur,” Dhanraj jokes about sticking around in a scene that has seen countless burnouts and fadeouts. The documentary scene has considerably expanded to include personal subjects, a pursuit of the quirky and the curious, and an emphasis on individual stories over ideological questions—which makes the 60-year-old film-maker’s dogged documentation of grassroots organizations working on social issues all the more relevant. Her most recent work, Invoking Justice, is a classic example of the personal-is-political approach that marked several fictional and non-fictional cinematic pursuits in the 1980s. The 86-minute film shared the award in the Best Documentary (above 40 minutes) category at the recently concluded Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF), apart from snagging a Best Editor award for its talented editor, Jabeen Merchant.

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Carriers of change

Budhaditya Bhattacharya | The Hindu | 13 Feb 2014

Persistence Resistance returns to the Capital, with a renewed emphasis on the practice of documentary filmmaking.

Persistence Resistance, a documentary film festival organised by the Magic Lantern Foundation (MLF), is back after taking a break last year. From its inception in 2008, the festival has sought to bring documentary films, filmmakers and audiences together, and this year’s edition takes the quest forward, albeit slightly differently.

In the six years that it has been around for, a number of other documentary film festivals have taken flight in the Capital. The frequency of individual documentary screenings has gone up too. These developments compelled Gargi Sen, curator of the film festival, and director of MLF, to rethink the role of Persistence Resistance. “We took a break to see why should we do it, and what is it that we do,” she says. “What I kept hearing back from people was that our uniqueness was we build in conversations with practitioners. Our emphasis has been on the practice, much more than the film per se.”

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Festival Preview | Two heads better than one

Nandini Ramnath | Live Mint | 11 Feb 2014

Persistence Resistance, the curiously named annual documentary festival of the Magic Lantern Foundation (MLF) in Delhi, took a break last year, but is back with the suggestion that two heads are always better than one. The theme of Persistence Resistance, which will run at three venues in Delhi between 16 and 20 February, is collaborations, whether it is between film-maker couples (Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam, for instance) or a director and his or her magnificent obsession (R.V. Ramani’s self-reflexive cinema).

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Documentary Festival Persistence Resistance 2014 to open on Feb 16 in Delhi

Newsdesk | Dear Cinema | 11 Feb 2014

The 6th edition of Persistence Resistance, a documentary film festival, will take place from 16-20 February, 2014.

It will take place over the three venues of Goethe Institut – Max Mueller Bhavan, India International Centre – Main Auditorium and Khoj International Artists’ Association.The inaugural film of the festival is Deepa Dhanraj’s 1986 documentary on communal violence in Hyderabad, Kya Hua Iss Shehar Ko. Dhanraj’s 1991 film on family planning, Something Like a War that won the Best Long Documentary at Films De Femmes, Creteil, France, will also be screened.

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Latest Updates on Persistence Resistance

Round-up of Day 1: Launching 'Project Cinema City'

The sixth edition of Persistence Resistance Film Festival 2014 began with the book release of ‘Project Cinema City’ in a tightly packed hall at Max Muller Bhavan in New Delhi. Prof. Kaushik Bhaumik from the Jawaharlal Nehru University presented the commencement address and announced the screening of ‘Sin City’. ...Round-up of Day 1: Launching 'Project Cinema City'

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