*Printable Full Schedule

Wed Sep 24th, 2008 7:00 PM
24 frames per day Sonali Gulati, 2008, USA, English, 7 minutes, Digital
24 frames per day was conceived by combining 24 photographs captured each day over a period of 9 months. Yes, that's what makes this baby! And it's the same photograph each day, or rather the same frame each day. A daily meditation by the filmmaker photographing the front door of her "home" makes this a very personal and political film that raises important questions around immigration, cultural stereotypes, and diasporic identity.
Milind Soman Made Me Gay Harjant Gill, 2007, India/USA, English, 26 minutes, Digital
Milind Soman Made Me Gay is a conceptual documentary about desire and notions of ‘home’ and ‘belonging’. The film employs a unique mix of visual elements along with voice over narration to juxtapose memories of the filmmaker’s past against stories of three gay South Asian men living in the diaspora. Overshadowing these nostalgic explorations of life ‘back home,’ are harsh realities of homophobia and racism in America and an on-going struggle to find a place of belonging.
The World Unseen Shamim Sarif, 2007, South Africa, English, 94 minutes, 35mm
Seattle Premierre
In the pressure cooker of apartheid South Africa, two women meet and their worlds are turned upside down. Miriam is a traditional Indian mother - hardworking and self-effacing. Amina breaks all the rules by driving a taxi and setting up a cafe with a local black man. In the face of outraged disapproval, their friendship flourishes. But the price, for Miriam, is the discovery of impossible truths about her marriage. In a system that divides white from black, black from Asian and the women from men, what chance is there for an unexpected love to survive?

Wine Reception with actress Sheetal Sheth
We are excited that actress Sheetal Sheth will join us for post-film discussion and reception. Sheetal was featured in Closing Night Film Indian Cowboy of our first ISAFF in 2004. Join us in welcoming Sheetal Sheth to Seattle!
Several filmmakers and guests will be present for Opening Night including Sonali Gulati, Harjant Gill, Parvez Sharma, and Amyn Kaderali.
Seattle's only Indian Afro Cuban ensemble band Anjuman will provide live music.
Kathak/Salsa rhythm in Rag Jhinjoti
A vibrant contemporary kathak piece that playfully blends Afro-Cuban rhythmic patterns with kathak, a linear & graceful ancient North Indian dance. The dance showcases the flavorful complex footwork and dynamic pirouettes or chakkars of Kathak through a melodic composition in Hindustani rag-Jhinjoti

Music accompaniment by ANJUMAN

Archana Kumar is a teacher, performer, classical & post modern choreographer who's lived in Seattle for 7.5 yrs and most recently re-located to Chicago. More info at www.archanakathak.com
Anjuman: Indian/Afro-Cuban Ensemble
Rumba meets Raga

Anjuman: Indian/Afro-Cuban Ensemble is a Seattle based fusion group that combines the rhythmic vitality of salsa drumming with the melodic poignancy of East Indian ragas.

Anjuman is Brandon McIntosh (sarod), Seth Littlefield (percussion) and Phil Georgas (bass).
Sat Sep 27th, 2008 12:00 PM
Panel: Gender & Sexuality in Independent Films Panelists: Gayatri Gopinath, Sonali Gulati, Pratibha Parmar, Veena Sood. Moderator: Sandip Roy
Panel discussion will focus on representations of LGBT South Asians in independent films with a comparative analysis to such representations in more popular forums such as Bollywood cinema. We chose the panelists particularly because of their unique experience with and immersion in films that give voice to women and sexual minorities. The moderated discussion will allow ample opportunity for the audience to dialogue with panelists via questions and comments. Our goals for this discussion are for our audience to gain a greater understanding of the challenges of cinema that dares to highlight the human condition of women, transgendered persons and other sexual minorities, and to appreciate the complex and rich diversity of such cinema.
Sat Sep 27th, 2008 2:30 PM
68 pages Sridhar Rangayan, 2007, India, Hindi, 92 minutes
Coming from a country like India that is still in denial, where being HIV+ is still a curse, '68 Pages' rips open the underbelly of its society to reveal how it stigmatizes and shuns those who are HIV+ or even those who just want to be what they are. Through 68 Pages of a counselors diary, we see the stories of Paayal, a sex worker; Nishit, an ID user; Kiran, a gay man and Umrao, a transsexual bar dancer - their stories of pain and fear, humiliation and rejection - not only by the society, but even by their loved ones. While these stories expose the shallowness of the system, it also offers hope and healing by trying to bring about a better understanding of their fight to live with dignity. The film is a tribute to the human spirit of optimism and survival. Please visit 68 Pages and Humsafar Trust for more information about the film.

Petals Suresh Natarajan, 2001, India, Malayalam with English subtitles, 16 minutes, VHS
In 1999 the newspapers in Kerala South India broke a shocking tale of two young lesbian girls who ended their lives beneath a train. A note they carried stated that they were ending their lives as they had failed in their long struggle to live together in the harsh and hypocritical society of Kerala. This highly imaginative film picks up on the agony of those innocent girls and many others who still struggle for their emotional rights.
Sat Sep 27th, 2008 4:30 PM
A Jihad for Love Parvez Sharma, 2007, English
Fourteen centuries after the revelation of the holy Qur'an to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), Islam today is the world's second largest and fastest growing religion. Muslim gay filmmaker Parvez Sharma travels the many worlds of this dynamic faith discovering the stories of its most unlikely storytellers: lesbian and gay Muslims.

Filmed over 5 1/2 years, in 12 countries and 9 languages, "A Jihad for Love" comes from the heart of Islam. Looking beyond a hostile and war-torn present, this film seeks to reclaim the Islamic concept of a greater Jihad, which can mean 'an inner struggle' or 'to strive in the path of God'. In doing so the film and its remarkable subjects move beyond the narrow concept of 'Jihad' as holy war.
* Post film discussion with filmmaker Parvez Sharma and local LGBTQ muslims and allies
Sat Sep 27th, 2008 7:00 PM
Gupshup with Filmmakers
Gupshup means chatter, and we will provide the ambiance for you to chatter with ISAFF filmmakers and audiences.

For the Muslim community attending the screening of A Jihad for Love, this will be a time to break fast and continue the dialog in an informal setting.

For those attending Queering Bollywood at 8pm, come early to socialize.

Everyone is welcome to join us!
Sat Sep 27th, 2008 8:00 PM
Queering Bollywood: Alternative Sexualities in Popular Indian Cinema Gayatri Gopinath & Sandip Roy, English, A Clip Show and Presentation
What does queerness look like on the Bollywood screen? How has Bollywood – the biggest film industry in the world --traditionally encoded same-sex desire? How have these codes changed in the last decade, with the emergence of a more visible queer presence in South Asia? Join academic Gayatri Gopinath and journalist Sandip Roy in a discussion of how popular Indian cinema has historically provided queer audiences rich material for imagining queer lives, desires and pleasures, both in South Asia and in the diaspora. We will explore the ways in which recent shifts in sexual and gender norms in South Asia have both opened up and shut down queer possibilities on the Bollywood screen.
* Post film discussion with Gayatri Gopinath & Sandip Roy
Thu Sep 25th, 2008 7:00 PM
Eviction Grady Walker, 2006, Nepal/Bhutan/USA, Nepali/English, 10 minutes, DVD
The Kingdom of Bhutan evicted 1/6 of its population in the early 1990s. EVICTION offers a glimpse into this undocumented tragedy and focuses on the 106,000 refugees still languishing in camps in eastern Nepal. Bhutanese Nepali refugees arrived in Seattle
My Daughter the Terrorist Beate Arnestad, 2007, Norway, English, Tamil, 52 minutes
Why do two young girls choose to become suicide bombers?

This fascinating documentary is an exceedingly rare, inside look at an organization that most of the world has blacklisted as a terrorist group. Made by the first foreign film crew to be given access to the Tamil Tigers (LTTE) of Sri Lanka, the film offers important insights into the recently re-ignited conflict in Sri Lanka.

Twenty-four-year-olds Dharsika and Puhalchudar have been living and fighting side-by-side for seven years as part of LTTE’s elite force, the Black Tigers. Their story is told through cinema verité footage, newsreel footage, and interviews with the women and Dharsika’s mother. The women describe heartbreaking traumas they both experienced at the hands of the Sri Lankan army, which led them to join the guerrilla forces. As they discuss their readiness to become suicide bombers and their abiding loyalty to the unnamed “Leader” – who they are sure would never harm civilians – grisly images of past LTTE suicide bombings provide somber counterpoints. Their curiously flat affects raise the possibility that they have been brainwashed. This even-handed documentary sheds light on the reasons that the Tamil Tigers continue their bloody struggle for independence while questioning their tactics.

* Post film discussion
Thu Sep 25th, 2008 9:00 PM
10th Avatar Charuvi Agarval, 2007, India, 3 minutes, Digital
Television’s influence is so great that it has left us completely mesmerized and has become our new form of worship. Our faith in the divine power has been challenged several times, through the ages. According to Hindu mythology an avatar appeared who relieved man’s distress and re-established the belief in God and the avatar. Nine incarnations of God or avatars have appeared thus far and the 10th avatar appeared with the fusion of mass media and formal worship. This is the story about the challenge divine worship faced as cable TV encroached our “idle” time.
Pakistan's Dame Edna 2006, Pakistan/UK, Urdu, English, 14 minutes, Digital
One of the last things you would expect to see on TV in Pakistan is a transvestite host tackling issues Muslim society would prefer to ignore. But Ali Saleem, Pakistan’s Dame Edna, is in her element.
“I am going to be the biggest Diva this country has ever produced!” Ali Saleem proclaims. In the guise of a snobby middle age dame, Saleem hosts one of Pakistan’s most cutting edge TV shows.
Nosh-e-Jan Gazelle Samizay, 2008, Afghanistan
In Nosh-e Jan (Bon Appetit) the viewer is invited to witness the ritual of passing and consuming secrets within an Afghan-American family. The ritual serves as an outlet of expression for the women that bear the secrets, without violating the strict code of keeping face. The secrets are shared in three different languages (Pashto, Dari, and English), each of which signifies a different generation in the family. While the women are the main transmitters of the secrets, the impact on men must not be forgotten.
Flying on One Engine Joshua Z Weinstein, 2008, USA/India, 52 minutes, Digital
Wheelchair bound, without a larynx, and diagnosed with a life-threatening aortic aneurysm, Dr. Sharadkumar Dicksheet now lives only (and barely) so he can travel to India to perform free operations in marathon-like surgery sessions where up to 700 children receive treatment for their cleft lips and other deformities. Although Dicksheet survives off of social security while living in his Brooklyn apartment, his life is drastically different in India where the eight-time Nobel Prize nominee is treated like a living god. FLYING ON ONE ENGINE shows how this quirky, funny, and sometimes difficult character overcomes his own ailments by curing others.

From Dr. Dicksheet:

"$150 may mean the difference between a child suffering from disabilities and torment all of his or her life AND a full productive life.

Infants born with Cleft Lips or Palates are unable to suckle milk and die of starvation or malnutrition, or are abandoned or killed by their parents. Abandoned children live as outcasts and are further vulnerable to starvation, malnutrition, violence and death. With Dr. Dicksheet's free surgery camps, the parents are empowered to take action and shape the destiny of their children. Thus he restores the physical functions of children and reduces their vulnerability to malnutrition, ill health and violence.

You can change the life of one child by donating $150 towards the INDIA PROJECT."
Sun Sep 28th, 2008 12:00 PM
Prarambha Santosh Sivan, 2007, India, Tamil with English subtitles, 14 minutes
Prarambha (The Beginning), directed by renowned cinematographer and director Santosh Sivan, features the South Indian Superstar Prabhudeva as a truck driver who discovers a little boy in the back of his van. The boy is on a journey to find his mother, who left him upon discovering that she was HIV positive. Prarambha is one of four short dramatic films by cutting-edge Indian directors Mira Nair, Vishal Bhardwaj, Santosh Sivan and Farhan Akhtar that aim to dismantle myths and misconceptions about HIV/AIDS.
Migration Mira Nair, 2007, India, Hindi with English subtitles, 18 minutes
Mira Nair's film, Migration, deals with AIDS as the great class leveler in society by following its transmission through interweaving stories linking urban and rural India. Shiney Ahuja plays a rural labourer who leaves his wife for work in Mumbai, where he gets mixed up in a dangerous triangle with a frustrated wife, performed by Sameera Reddy, and her closeted husband, played by Irfan Khan. Migration is one of four short dramatic films by cutting-edge Indian directors Mira Nair, Vishal Bhardwaj, Santosh Sivan and Farhan Akhtar that aim to dismantle myths and misconceptions about HIV/AIDS.
Blood Brothers Vishal Bhardwaj, 2007, India, Hindi with English subtitles, 19 minutes
Blood Brothers
Blood Brothers is directed by award-wining new wave director Vishal Bhardwaj (Omkara) and stars Siddhartha (Rang de Basanti) as a young man who gets a positive HIV diagnosis and allows his life to fall apart. Pankaj Kapoor plays his laconic doctor. Blood Brothers is one of four short dramatic films by cutting-edge Indian directors Mira Nair, Vishal Bhardwaj, Santosh Sivan and Farhan Akhtar that aim to dismantle myths and misconceptions about HIV/AIDS.

In addition to the AIDS JaaGO collection, we will screen Jyotis Hope, a short film produced by I-Tech. After the films, there will be a discussion lead by University of Washington School of Medicine students who have worked in the high HIV prevalence area of Namakkal, Tamil Nadu.

* Post film discussion with UW Med Students, I-Tech
Sun Sep 28th, 2008 2:30 PM
Every Good Marriage Begins With Tears Simon Chambers, 2007, UK, English, 62 minutes
East London Muslim girl Shahanara is changing from pink hotpants into a saree, to meet her husband at the airport. She has only met him once before, when she was married in a union arranged by her Bangladeshi family. Shahanara only agreed to the marriage to try and heal old wounds with her father, who had banished her from her family for her Western ways.

Meanwhile, her devout Muslim sister Hushnara is being groomed for her own arranged marriage, something that at 19 she doesn’t feel at all ready for. This is a lively, funny and affectionate film about a British Muslim family, made all the more revealing because of the filmmaker’s long standing friendship with them. It is also a frank and absorbing view of a community from the inside.
Sari (W)Rap 2007, US, English, 3 minutes
Comedienne Rasika Mathur celebrates the famous fabric from India with some infamous musical genre spoofs.

It's all part of entertaining the world through education and music. Wait educating the world through entertainment...Hell, it's SchoolHouse Rock meets India! - Rasika Mathur
Tasveer Youth Initiative

Following a brief post-film discussion of “Every Good Marriage...”, the group will present their own short personal video based on stories of arranged marriages from their communities in Seattle. This is the group’s first production.

The Tasveer Youth Initiative is founded upon the idea that film provides a compelling medium through which the voices of young South Asians can be projected. It allows young South Asians in the greater Seattle area to express their views on pressing socio-cultural issues through the viewing and creation of films and documentaries. The group will provide a venue to discuss topics ranging from queerness in the South Asian community, to the Hindi/Muslim divide and, the groups focus for this year's film festival, arranged marriages.

* Post film discussion with Tasveer Youth Initiative on Arranged Marriages
Sun Sep 28th, 2008 4:30 PM
Donkey in Lahore Faramarz K-Rahber, 2007, Australia,Pakistan, Urdu/English, 117 minutes
Donkey in Lahore is an observational documentary that follows the quixotic courtship of Brian, an ex-goth puppeteer from Australia, and Amber, the traditional Muslim girl he met and fell in love with during a short trip to Pakistan in 2000. Upon his return to Australia, Brian decides to convert to Islam and return to Pakistan to seek her hand in marriage. Can this unlikely couple survive the challenges they are about to face?
Sun Sep 28th, 2008 7:00 PM
Kagbeni Bhusan Dahal, 2007, Nepal, 120 minutes, 35mm
Upon returning to his village after a long spell in Malaysia, Krishna travels to a neighboring village with his childhood friend Ramesh. On their journey they encounter a hermit who returns Krishna’s kindness with a strange gift — a monkey’s paw that will grant your wish. Unaware of its ominous powers, Ramesh makes a wish. Thus begins the journey of betrayal and revenge.
A Silent Monsoon Pravesh Gurung, 2006, Nepal, 34 minutes
Set in a Nepali village Jhari reveals Durga’s struggle to save her twelve- year-old daughter Laxmi from their profession of prostitution. As night falls and the monsoon clouds gather, will Durga be able to fight the society, her fate, and set Laxmi free?
Fri Sep 26th, 2008 7:00 PM
Before the Rains Santosh Sivan, 2007, India, English, Malayalam, 98 minutes
Set in 1930s southern India against the backdrop of a growing nationalist movement, BEFORE THE RAINS is the English language debut of acclaimed Indian director Santosh Sivan (The Terrorist, Asoka). An idealistic young Indian man (Rahul Bose) finds himself torn between his ambitions for the future and his loyalty to the past when people in his village learn of an affair between his British boss (Linus Roache) and a village woman (Nandita Das).

Before the Rains explores the turmoil of a man who is torn between two worlds and the choices he makes to gain his own freedom and embrace his true identity.
Released Soham Mehta, 2008, USA, English, 8 minutes, Digibeta
Three years ago, a brutal hate crime sent Kaustabh to the hospital. Today, his assailant will be released from prison, and Kaustabh wants revenge. The film opens with Kaustabh waiting outside of the prison for Jeffrey's release. Kaustabh follows Jeffrey home and confronts him at gunpoint. Through his encounter with Jeffrey, Kaustabh realizes that revenge will not help him and that his only hope is releasing the hate and anger he has harbored within himself.
Fri Sep 26th, 2008 9:00 PM
Kissing Cousins Amyn Kaderali, 2007, USA, English, 98 minutes
A "relatively" romantic comedy about a professional heartbreaker (and cynical bachelor) who teams up with his attractive cousin from the UK in order to fool his friends into believing he is capable of a relationship. Hijinks and laughs ensue with a hilarious cast!
Visit the movie website: http://www.kissingcousinsmovie.com
Rewind Atul Taishete, 2007, India, English, 9 minutes
Told entirely in reverse, a group of thieves play Russian Roulette to determine who gets to keep all of their heist money. Rewind is the first Indian short film to have an all India theatrical release.
* Post film discussion with filmmaker Amyn Kaderali
Mini Theater
Fri Sep 26th, 2008 6:00 PM
Queer & Desi: Exploring LGBTQ issues in the South Asian Community Gita Mehrotra, FREE, Workshop
As a community-based organization, Tasveer sees this as an opportunity to spark dialogue, consciousness-raising, and skill-building around queer issues within the South Asian community.

The focus of the workshop will be to provide a space for participants to engage with basic training and dialogue regarding issues of gender identity and sexual orientation in a South Asian context. This will include: critical self-reflection about our own values regarding gender, sexuality, and LGBT communities, basic terminology and language, discussion about homophobia and heterosexism, and conversations about how to work in alliance with South Asian LGBTQ communities.

We highly recommend this workshop for audience members who plan to attend one or more of the LGBTQ programs in ISAFF. The workshop will prepare you to better understand and engage with the ideas presented in these programs.

Workshop is limited to 20 participants and is FREE. Pre-registration is required. Email Gita Mehrotra to register for the workshop.
Sat Sep 27th, 2008 2:30 PM
Comedy Improv Workshop: Learn improvisational skills with actress and comedienne Veena Sood Veena Sood, 120 minutes, Workshop
This two-hour workshop invites students to learn the basics of improvisational skills. There is no pressure to be "funny" but rather, the focus is on narrative, storytelling skills & spontaneity. The exercises free the mind; actors get energized, and use their imagination to suddenly invent stories without any effort. Comedy will be the inevitable (and hilarious) by-product.

At the conclusion of any Improv training, participants feel lighter, healthier, and share good feelings towards each other.

Pre-registration is required for this workshop. Buy your ticket ahead of time as there is very limited space.
Sun Sep 28th, 2008 1:00 PM
ACLF CLP 2008 Presents: A multimedia piece on mixed-orientation relationships 2008, USA, FREE
Asian Pacific Community Leadership Foundation founded in 1998, is a non-profit organization that promotes social, economic and political justice by training and supporting a strong, sustainable community of civically engaged leaders that reflect the diversity of local Asians & Pacific Islanders.

The Community Leadership Program Batch 2008 is comprised of 14 participants who have an interest in Asian and Pacific Islander issues and are dedicated to enriching and developing their communities.

Carrying on the tradition of ACLF in providing opportunity for experiential learning through a collaborative, team-oriented approach focused around studying and addressing a significant issue facing the Asian Pacific American community, CLP Batch 2008 accepted the challenge to provide a vehicle to give a voice to South Asians who have been or are involved in mixed-orientation relationships.

In partnership with Tasveer, Community Leadership Program Batch 2008 is showcasing a documentary or mixed-media presentation on mixed-orientation relationships. Mixed-orientation relationships have been defined as relationships in which the partners are of a differing sexual orientation. We hope that the documentary may serve as a vessel for understanding on the issues facing the South Asians who have been or are involved in mixed-orientation relationships.
* Post film discussion
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