Urban Lens Film Festival | Bengaluru: 21st – 24th September, 2017 | New Delhi: 6th – 8th October, 2017
The fourth edition of the Urban Lens Film Festival to be held in Bengaluru and New Delhi, remains committed to the idea that cinema allows us a space to reflect and re-examine the cities we live in.
In order to open the Urban Lens Film Festival to a greater diversity of films from wider geographical regions, the festival, for the first time, put out a call for entries. The call received an overwhelming response with more than 1600 entries from 102 countries. The 26 films being screened this year include a selection from the open call and a set of invited films. These fiction, non-fiction and animation films mirror a cinematic truth about cities, framing them beyond their skylines by teasing out individual/collective stories and experiences of people from around the world.
In keeping with the mission of the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) to engage with cities of the Global South, the festival explores cinematic narratives that emerge from countries such as India, Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Egypt, Jordan and South Africa. The thrust of urbanisation in these countries is unprecedented, giving rise to a sea of striking stories – a couple’s struggle for housing in a crowded city (Ek Ghar), resilience of people in making homes for themselves in an abandoned building in Caracas (Ruina), examining how men and women occupy public space during the day and night (Chasing Tails, Mod and Amdavad Ma Famous), a grandson’s search for the truth about his grandfather in Buenos Aires (70 y Pico), the experience of loneliness in a city (Solito) and understanding the everyday life experiences of a couple in Kolkata through images and sound (Asha Jaoar Majhe). In addition, films reflect on the stories of immigrants in Israel and the United States (Journey Birds and and i) and a fantastical imagination of Berlin (Wings of Desire).
The coming together of filmmakers, researchers, students and a larger section of the public to watch these films together at the Urban Lens Film Festival will hopefully create a space for reflection and spark critical discussions about cinema and the nature of urban experience.