Vastavam web: Curtains came down this evening at the First Guwahati International Film Festival (GIFF) with Dadasaheb Phalke Award winning legendary filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnan terming it as “one of the best” in the country.”I am overwhelmed because with the very first festival, Assam has established itself as one of the best in film festivals in the country,” said Gopalakrishnan, who graced the closing ceremony as the chief guest.During the six-day film extravaganza, 78 films from 32 countries were screened with a galaxy of national and international film personalities walking over the ‘Red Carpet’.The filmmaker, however, requested the organisers not to extend the competition section to international films as GIFF should present all the good films.
“At best, it can be a competition for South Asian films, including those from India, Pakistan, Burma and other neighbouring nations. Let us not go beyond that. It will be very difficult,” Gopalakrishnan said.Prasanna Vithanage from Sri Lanka was the chairman of the Jury, while other two members were B Lenin and Sanjib Sabhapandit.The closing film of the six-day film extravaganza was ‘Perekonnavaled’ of Estonia, directed by Valentin Kuik and Manfred Vainokivi.
The Assam government supported festival began on October 28 with screening of the Oscar winning ‘The Salesman’, directed by Asghar Farhadi and produced by a joint collaboration of Iran and France.The five films of Turkey were ‘Ember’ directed by Zeki Demirkubuz, ‘Yarim’ by Cagil Nurhak Aydogdu, ‘Toz Bezi’ by Ahu Ozturk, ‘Rauf’ by Baris Kayer and Soner Caner, and ‘Kalander Sogugu’ by Mustafa Kara.
Six Iranian movies that were screened at the GIFF are ‘Dokhtar’ by Reza Mirkarimi, ‘Rokha Divaneh’ by Abolhassan Davoodi, ‘Malaria’ by Parviz Shahbazi, ‘Raftan’ by Navid Mahmoudi, ‘Valderama’ by Abbas Amini and ‘Inja Kassi Nemimirad’ by Hossein Kondoir.Important films from Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Argentina, Poland, Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia, Latvia, Japan, Belgium, Ireland, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Israel, Greece, Austria, Russia, Philippines, Afghanistan, Peru, Romania, Denmark, Cyprus, Estonia and the US were also shown.Films by pioneering filmmakers of Assam — Dr Bhupen Hazarika (‘Shakuntala’), Abdul Mazid (‘Chameli Memsahib’) and Dr Bhabendranath Saikia (‘Sandhya Raag’) were also shown.An important feature of the festival was Open Forum sessions on topics related to films and the region as well as Master Classes by film personalities in their respective fields.