AUSTIN, Texas—Documentary films from South Asia will be featured at the Texas Union Auditorium on April 20-21. Sponsored by The University of Texas at Austin’s departments of Asian Studies and Radio-TV-Film, and the Austin chapter of the Association of Indian Development, the films are part of a traveling film festival.
Fifteen films from the Film South Asia festival, held in Kathmandu in October 2001, have been on a world tour, showcasing the best of South Asian documentary film-making. The films give audiences an opportunity to sample an exciting range of topics and themes, presentation styles and techniques.
The films will be shown from 4-10:30 p.m. on April 20 and from 3-9:30 p.m. on April 21 in the Texas Student Union Auditorium.
They are presented by HIMAL, a Kathmandu-based not-for-profit organization that works in the fields of communications, publishing, education and training. The film festival has grown out of a regional documentary film festival competition HIMAL has organized since 1997.
Film South Asia has already traveled to Pakistan, India and the United States, with the guiding principle that local filmmakers can bring local issues to the screen much more effectively than high-cost television programming meant for general audiences.
Among this year’s films are “My Migrant Soul,” the story of a Bangladeshi laborer in Malaysia who does not return home; a rough cut of “The Life and Times of Lachuman Magar,” a humorous look at a lascivious 58-year-old Nepali prisoner; and “Jari Mari: Of Cloth and Other Stories,” which looks at life in Mumbai’s sweatshops.
“The Killing Terraces,” a powerful look at the rise of the Maoist movement in the mid-western hills of Nepal, will also be screened. “While A Sun Sets In” documents religious intolerance in Pakistan and “Our Boys” explores the dilemmas facing a group of young boys who are members of a pop group in Dhaka.