Recreating an era

Talking talkies

Jatra talkies provided acinematic experience to people living in small towns and hamlets, who did not have access to conventional cinema halls

Gajendra Ahire's film Touring Talkies premiered in the Top View Cinema Section at the 17th International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK), December 7 to 14, which was held in Thiruvanathapuram.

The film which was screened on 11th December and 13th December, attempts to capture a quintessential part of cinema prevalent not so long ago. Having lost out to technology, these Jatra talkies as they are called provided a cinematic experience to people living in small towns and hamlets, who did not have access to conventional cinema halls. From a whopping 2,000 Jatra talkies or travelling cinema as they were called, in 1977, the number has dwindled down to 48. Throwing light on the project, which took almost two years to complete and involved three years of research into the subject, the director explains that his film portrays the hardship of the female protagonist Chandni, essayed by Trupti Bhoir, who owns Chandni Talkies. "Through the film, I have depicted her struggle and hardship to keep her company afloat." The film according to the director addresses an universal subject which is treated in a realistic manner. Traversing widely across Maharashtra, it was shot during the various Jatra festivals to capture the essence.

With inputs from PTI

IFFK this year

Organised by Kerala State Chalachitra Academy, the IFFK was inaugurated by Kerala Chief Minister Ommen Chandy. Fifty four countries participated in 15 different categories and a select 200 films were screened in theatres across the city. Malayalam film actor Mohanlal was the chief guest at the festival which was attended by Union Minister of Human development, Shashi Tharoor.

The festival opened with Alfred Hitchcock's silent film The Ring with a live orchestra playing in the background. Australian indigenous films, Top Angle Cinema, Hitchcock's silent films and movies on adolescence were the new categories at this year's festival, which screened 14 movies under Competition Section, 76 in World Cinema category and seven under the Indian Cinema Now section.

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