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Siraj Syed


Siraj Syed is the India Correspondent for FilmFestivals.com and a member of FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics. He is a Film Festival Correspondent since 1976, Film-critic since 1969 and a Feature-writer since 1970. He is also an acting and dialogue coach. 

 

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IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 35: Encapsulating BanglaDesh’s Liberation War is Meghmallar

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 35: Encapsulating BanglaDesh’s Liberation War is Meghmallar “In Bangladesh, we call the 1971 Liberation War as the People’s War. My film Meghmallar is the story of a small-town family’s struggle during the war time.” – Bangladeshi Film Director Zahidur Rahim Anjan “This is not the story of one family, but of every family in the-then East Pakistan. Every family had a contribution in the Liberation War, the most important event ...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 34: Six hours to school; picking Prithviraj Das Gupta’s Green Blackberries

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 34: Six hours to school; picking Prithviraj Das Gupta’s Green Blackberries “They had to walk first, and then row the boat, and, later on, they will have to take some other vehicles to reach the school, which meant six hours of journey for them to get education. In the schools, we found out that there was only one room and each bench was a class. Yet, it was inspiring to meet the kids and adults with whatever knowledge they have, who knew the value of educat...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 32: June is the tale of a troubled boy and a mysterious woman

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 32: June is the tale of a troubled boy and a mysterious woman “Healing is Beautiful. Through our film, we want to show that if there is a part of you that's broken, if there is a part of you which needs healing, that process will happen. Be open and have a conversation.” This is the message conveyed by Directors Suhrud Godbole and Vaibhav Khisti of the Marathi film June, which has been screened in the Indian Panorama Feature Film section of the 51st edi...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 31: Yesterday’s past, and submerged villages, are the theme for Nila Madhab Panda’s Kalira Atita

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 31: Yesterday’s past and submerged villages are the theme for Nila Madhab Panda’s Kalira Atita “I have seen with my own eyes, how, over the years, the sea had engulfed three villages in Coastal Odisha. In my films, I am giving the reflection of what is the reality and what I have seen, not what people like to see. I don’t believe in balancing things when the reality is in front of me. In Kalira Atita, I have tried to capture the emotional impact...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 30: Indian première of We Still Have the Deep Black Night

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 30: Indian première of We Still Have the Deep Black Night Gustavo Galvao, Director of the film ‘We Still Have the Deep Black Night’, says that his movie is “a story of passion for music and art; and finding identity through music”.  He was addressing a press conference at the 51st edition of the International Film Festival of India. The film had its Indian Première at IFFI, in the Festival Kaleidoscope section of the festival....

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 29: Martina Sakova’s Summer Rebels is told through the eyes of an 11 year-old boy

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 29: Martina Sakova’s Summer Rebels is told through the eyes of an 11 year-old boy An 11-year-old boy defies his mother and runs away from his home in Germany to Slovakia, in search of his grandfather, only to realise that his grandpa is not as friendly as he imagined him to be. Speaking about the adventures of this boy, Director Martina Sakova, of Summer Rebels, an IFFI 51 World Panorama film, said: "The story is told through the eyes of an 11-year old boy....

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 28: Onkar Diwadkar’s Still Alive, a psycho-drama on suicide

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 28: Onkar Diwadkar’s Still Alive, a psycho-drama on suicide “My film tells the story of a young protagonist who reaches the verge of suicide, leading to a psychological realisation. The protagonist wants more to run away from her life situation, than she wants to commit suicide; but we cannot escape our situation, we need to go through our situation and overcome it, with the help of a realisation.” Director and Producer Onkar Diwadkar was sharing the ...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 27: “OTT is here to stay”: G.P. Vijayakumar

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 27: “OTT is here to stay”: G.P. Vijayakumar “There was a big opposition when OTT made its initial appearance citing that it will end theatrical releases and shut movie businesses. However, the traditional film industry, theatres and blockbuster movies will continue to stay despite OTT and TV channels being around. They only complement the entertainment business of cinema financially, making it more lucrative.  The viewership on OTT is ever increa...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 26: Past, Present and Future of Visualisation, according to Aditya Vikram Sengupta

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 26: Past, Present and Future of Visualisation, according to Aditya Vikram Sengupta The shift from analogue to digital has changed the art of film-making, and also the mindset for film-making at the same time. “Digitalisation has been a game-changer. With the coming of the digital age, taking re-takes has become easier and visualisation has taken a backseat. The process of capturing an image is not real anymore”, feels award-winning film director, cinematogr...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 25: PCs of Kripal Kalita, Blessy Ipe Thomas

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 25: PCs of Kripal Kalita, Blessy Ipe Thomas Kripal Kalita’s Assamese language film, ‘The Bridge’, throws light on the devastations and hardships that floods bring to Assam villages every year. “There is no solution in sight for this problem. I, being a farmer’s son, hailing from rural Assam, have faced this,” said Kalita, while addressing a press conference, at the 51st International Film Festival of India (IFFI), held in Goa, on the...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 24: A dialogue on sound, with FTII Assoc. Prof. Madhu Apsara

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 24: A dialogue on sound, with FTII Assoc. Prof. Madhu Apsara Sounds are crucial for a film to feel realistic for the audience. Sounds and dialogue must perfectly sync with the actions in a cinema without any lag and must sound the way they look.  Suggesting sounds for better quality output is necessary wherever we feel the need, said Prof. Madhu Apsara, Associate Professor, Department of Sound Recording and Design, Film and Television Institute of India, Pune. He...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 23: John Mathew Matthan talks about Sarfarosh-2

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 23: John Mathew Matthan talks about Sarfarosh-2 “I have travelled all over India in search of content for my films”. “It is important for any film-maker to understand the elements of sociology and politics”. “I think a writer or director should be sensitive about the society. You can put across your point without being offensive to anyone”. These are the words of John Mathew Matthan, Chairperson of IFFI 51 Indian Panorama Jury, an...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 22: PCs of Shreedhar B.S., Prithvi Konanur, Gunjalamma

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 22: PCs of Shreedhar B.S., Prithvi Konanur, Gunjalamma “The way we live right now suggests there are two different worlds - of “them” and “us”, where “they” are misunderstood by “us”. Our film is that window to see a world which needs to be understood with love, in all its nonconformist ways, so that we can charter a path to assimilate them in one world, where we all co-exist with love and mutual respect.” Thi...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 21: PCs of Ritabhari Chakraborty, Soham Majumdar

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 21: PCs of Ritabhari Chakraborty, Soham Majumdar “Our film reminds us that no creation of God can be impure just because they menstruate”-- these are the words of Ms. Ritabhari Chakraborty, the lead actor of the Bengali film Brahma Janen Gopon Kommoti, which was screened in the Indian Panorama – Feature Film Category, of the 51st edition of Indian International Film Festival of India, held in Panaji, Goa. Ms. Chakraborty was addressing a press ...

RIFF 7, 04: Second list of selected films released

RIFF 7, 04: Second list of selected films released The second list of the films of the Rajasthan International Film Festival 2021, Jaipur-Jodhpur, March 20-24, 2021, was released yesterday, by Somendra Harsh, CEO/FOUNDER , FESTIVAL DIRECTOR, RIFF 2021 and RIFF FILM CLUB  The selection now includes Feature Regional film "Funeral", Directed by Vivek Dubey, Rajasthani Music Video " Payaldi"Directed by Shaiman, Short Film "Dementia - The Unforgettable Forget...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January 2021, 20: Rahul Rawail retraces Hindi film history, ‘In-Conversation’, online

IFFI 51, 16-24 January 2021, 20: Rahul Rawail retraces Hindi film history, ‘In-Conversation’, online The 1970s saw influx of new ideas, new experiments and a new genre of action films in Hindi cinema. Those were also the golden years for unconventional films and emergence of new techniques, said acclaimed film-maker Rahul Rawail, in an online ‘In-Conversation’ session on “Film-making in 50s, 60s and 70s”, at the 51st International Film Festival of India (I...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 19: PC of director Sharan Venugopal and actor Bhargava Poludasu

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 19: PC of director Sharan Venugopal and actor Bhargava Poludasu A mother accidentally finds a nude video of her daughter in her laptop – Oru Paathira Swapnam Pole (Indian Panorama Non-feature film) by Sharan Venugopal. A person who lost his memory in an accident and gets trapped in a house with a psychopath – Gatham (Indian Panorama Feature Film) by Kiran Kondamadugula. Debutant film-maker Sharan Venugopal and Actor/Producer Bhargava Poludasu, addre...

RIFF 7, 2021, 03: Pierre Filmon to be honoured

RIFF 7, 2021, 03: Pierre Filmon to be honoured Rajasthan International Film Festival (RIFF), accredited by the Federation of Film Societies of India (FFSI, North Region), organised by the RIFF Film Club, in a Hybrid Format, from 20 to 24th March 2021, will be held in Jaipur and Jodhpur, Rajasthan - India. This year, the theme for the RIFF 2021 is "Music in Cinema". RIFF 2021 will also celebrate the Pre Foundation Day of Rajasthan. Founder/Festival Director Somendra Harsh announced ...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 18: PC of Alex Piperno and Araquen Rodriguez

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 18: PC of Alex Piperno and Araquen Rodriguez “I was travelling from Uruguay to Argentina in a ferry, when I discovered that we had two parallel lives and that this ship was a fantastical ship which could connect these two parallel lives. It made me realise that this could also connect any two possible lives. It is an idea which I have had since ten years.” This is how Director Alex Piperno from Uruguay described the genesis of his debut feature film, ...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 17: Inaugural speeches and performances

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 17: Inaugural speeches and performances The 51st edition of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) got off with enthralling cultural performances amidst a dazzling ceremony celebrating the joy of cinema. The indoor Indoor Stadium at Panaji in Goa reverberated with the passion of a few film-stars, few film-makers and many film-lovers from around the world. The Opening Ceremony of Asia’s oldest and India’s biggest film festival was competently...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 16: Veteran Actor-Director-Singer Biswajit conferred Indian Personality of the Year Award

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 16: Bengali and Hindi veteran Actor-Director-Singer Biswajit conferred Indian Personality of the Year Award The 51st edition of the International Film Festival of India, Goa has conferred Biswajit Chatterjee, veteran actor, producer, director and singer of Hindi and Bengali cinema, with the Indian Personality of the Year Award. The Award was announced at the opening ceremony of the festival, by Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting, Shri Prakash Javadekar....

IFFI 51, 16-24 January 2021, 15: Terms and conditions applied

IFFI 51, 16-24 January 2021, 15: Terms and conditions applied Media accreditation came on the 29th of December, a mere 18 days before the festival. Those who had not booked travel tickets and not made hotel reservations must have been severely inconvenienced. Luckily, I had made my bookings in anticipation, and that was a bonus. This is the email we received on the 16th of January, the day the festival was inaugurated: “Welcome to the 51st International Film Festival of India, Goa. W...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January 2021, 14: Into the Darkness won the Golden Peacock

IFFI 51, 16-24 January 2021, 14: Into the Darkness won the Golden Peacock The epic World War II film Into the Darkness (De forbandede år) which portrays the story of a Danish electronics factory owner who is forced to produce for the occupying Nazi forces, has won the coveted Golden Peacock Award at the just-concluded 51st edition of the International Film Festival of India. The Golden Peacock Award consists of a cash prize of Rs. 40 lakhs (Rs. 4 million) to be shared equ...

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 13: Ratings of films seen

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 2021, 13: Ratings of films seen My ranking, out of five stars A Common Crime ** ½          Into The Darkness *** Under Construction ** ½       Roland Reber’s Cabaret of Death ** ½ An Old Lady *** Sonar Kella***           Light for The Youth *** ½    Green Blackberries *** Kalira Atita *** Jaadoo (Short)...

First-ever Yellowstone International Film Festival (YIFF) begins today

First-ever Yellowstone International Film Festival (YIFF) begins today More than 70 shorts, documentaries and feature films from all over the globe comprise the curated lineup of the first-ever Yellowstone International Film Festival (YIFF), taking place from Jan. 28th to Feb. 3rd, and powered by Movie Saints (www.moviesaints.com). The festival’s programming also includes seven Oscar-affiliated short films and documentaries. ...

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About Siraj Syed

Syed Siraj
(Siraj Associates)

Siraj Syed is a film-critic since 1970 and a Former President of the Freelance Film Journalists' Combine of India.

He is the India Correspondent of FilmFestivals.com and a member of FIPRESCI, the international Federation of Film Critics, Munich, Germany

Siraj Syed has contributed over 1,015 articles on cinema, international film festivals, conventions, exhibitions, etc., most recently, at IFFI (Goa), MIFF (Mumbai), MFF/MAMI (Mumbai) and CommunicAsia (Singapore). He often edits film festival daily bulletins.

He is also an actor and a dubbing artiste. Further, he has been teaching media, acting and dubbing at over 30 institutes in India and Singapore, since 1984.


Bandra West, Mumbai

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