Film Talents from the Goethe Institut presents nine short films on bereavement, forced evictions and social justice issues – Film & TV
The Goethe Institut organized on Friday a screening of nine very different short films made as part of its Film Talents cinema workshop at Beach Luxury in Karachi.
The films were an interesting and eclectic mix of fiction, documentary and hybrid genres that addressed several important issues such as forced evictions, poignant themes of grief, desire and death, as well as strong commentaries on issues of social justice. like massive deforestation, discrimination against minorities, sexual assault and even taboos like incestuous rape.
Film Talents started in October 2019 as a film workshop that initially stagnated, then went virtual for more than two years. The nine films were selected from among the 70 produced during the workshop. The films shown were All that perishes at the edge of the earth by Hira Nabi, Dia by Hamza Bangash, A train crosses the desert by Rahul Aijaz, The house is not safe by Sayed Masood Eslami, The secret life of a tree by Nadeem Al-Karimi, Azadi by Gul Nayani, The deadly road by Musa Yawari, Basheeran by Fareena Aslam and Train home Razi Uddin.
The films were produced collectively by the director of the Film Talents workshop and the German filmmaker Till Passow. The screening and the films were sponsored by the Goethe Institut and the shortlisted films were organized by the director of the institute Simone Lenz and Passow.
The films lasted from a minute and a half to 30 minutes and captivated audiences for two full hours.
Hira Nabi’s short narrative documentary All that perishes at the edge of the earth is a subtle story about shipbreaking workers who come from all over Pakistan to destroy ships at the Gadani Shipbreaking yard. The film captures the voice of the sinking ship and juxtaposes it with the plight of exploited workers who say they are only paid enough to be saved from death, just enough to survive, but never enough to live on. Nabi’s film has been shortlisted and screened at more than 25 film festivals, including the prestigious Sundance Film Festival in 2020.
by Rahul Aijaz A train crosses the desert is a Sindhi short film that focuses on two brothers who are both musicians. The oldest child is terminally ill and his younger brother is his only caregiver struggling to make ends meet after selling all the musical instruments they own and leaving their band. “The film is inspired by the death of my cousin who died of cancer. I wanted to make this film a therapeutic story of the loss, ”Aijaz explained. A train crosses the desert has participated in more than 10 film festivals, including the Jaipur International Film Festival in India.
Two of the shorter films screened were both female-directed films about women. Azadi by Gul Nayani is a two-minute satirical take that contrasts the most basic demands made by women during the Aurat Walk with the most ridiculous accusations, sexist comments, negative reactions and hatred that flood the streets. social media every year during and immediately after the walk. Basheeran by Fareena Aslam is a 90-second documentary about a 70-year-old taxi driver from Hyderabad who has been driving a taxi for over 36 years and was left homeless after being abandoned by his children.
The house is not safe, the only Afghan film shortlisted in the selection, by Sayed Masood Eslami, is a story of incestuous rape then The secret life of a tree is a magical realistic hybrid documentary condemning the triennial practice of logging in Hunza.
Passow mentioned in his opening speech that every film has been made on a shoestring budget and all films produced have been shortlisted and screened at several internationally renowned film festivals. Not all the filmmakers were able to be present at the screening, but five of the nine were able to do it and answer questions about their films as well as receive their workshop certificate.
Lenz, the director of the Goethe Institut, called Film Talents an initiative that supported young filmmakers seeking to hone their craft and produce meaningful cinema that touched on universal issues.