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Indian gay films screening July 16, 2009

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Bombay Dost Sunday High – 19 July – Films

The Sridhar Rangayan Film Fest

Three of Sridhar Rangayan’s award winning films are being screened as a package this Sunday. The director will be present for Q&A.

The-Pink-Mirror

Gulabi Aaina (2003, 40 mins)

The Pink Mirror pits two Indian drag queens against a gay teenager in a battle to woo a handsome hunk. It’s a clash of the east and west. Who will win? The drag queens, who are expert in the art of seduction with their wit, innuendo and cunning or the young teenager who is saucy, slutty and sly? Underneath the campy humorous exterior, the film is an exploration of the Indian gay landscape and understanding of the deep, humanly tender bondings that exist between drag queens in India who form unique, non-patriarchal families. Using the Bollywood soap idiom of song, dance and drama and for the first time in the Indian drag queens’ very own language, Hindi, the film also explores other veiled issues related to the Indian gay community: the lurking threat of HIV/AIDS. Winner of several awards and screened at 72 international film festivals and over 150 screenings across the world.

imdb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0386499

Poster4 copy

68 Pages (2007, 90mins)

oming 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.

The film has screened at 12 international film festivals and over a 110 screenings across India and other countries and won the Silver Remi award at Worldfest-Houston 2008.

imdb: http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt1151299/

Yours-Emotionally....

Yours Emotionally! (2005, 86 mins)
Sridhar Rangayan’s charming, daring film offers a fascinating look inside India’s emerging gay culture. Gay best buds Ravi, a second-generation Sikh, and Paul, an Englishman, live in London, where both are out and proud. They travel together to India, where they find a gay community far more open than they expected, as well as a community still held at bay by the country’s antiquated views on sexuality. Soon after their arrival, Ravi meets and falls in love with handsome, shy Mani. Their love is at first sight and mutual. But Mani is committed to an arranged marriage from which he cannot back out. Their love is doomed. Paul, meanwhile, is a horny dude who discovers that same-sex encounters are easy to find in India. As Ravi’s heart breaks, Paul is having the time of his life. The pair spend some time at a B&B run by Murthy and Anna (Ikhlaq Khan, Ajay Rohilla), a middle-aged gay couple.

As they get to know each other, all four men have life-altering epiphanies. The “boys” learn the true meaning of love from their older counterparts, who in turn learn the meaning of gay pride from the young ones. Lifelong friendships are formed.

imdb: http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt0818705/

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Time: 4.30 p.m. to 8.30 p.m., with a 15-minute break after the second film (i.e., 68 Pages)

Address: The Humsafar Trust’s Drop-in Centre, 4th floor, Municipal Transit Building (Vakola Municipal Market Building), Near Raheja Point and Vakola Masjid, Santacruz (East), Mumbai.

Space courtesy: The Humsafar Trust.

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You can now buy 68 Pages DVDs online in India through eBay January 15, 2009

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You can now buy 68 Pages online in India through eBay

Please click on any one of the below links:

 

eBay link for buying 68 Pages DVD

eBay Link for 68 Pages

Link for buying 68 Pages DVD online through eBay

dvd1

Indian Express Delhi July 5, 2008

Posted by humsafar in 68 pages, film on HIV/AIDS, HIV/AIDS, humsafar trust, Humsafar Trust Gay India TG Transgender MSM Indian-gay,, sridhar rangayan.
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 Capital witnesses Pride walk, but 68 Pages of anguish gets no hearing

– by Paromita Chakrobarty

Posted online: Friday , July 04, 2008 at 11:54:39
Updated: Friday , July 04, 2008 at 11:54:39

New Delhi, July 3 Director Sridhar Rangayan’s award-winning movie on HIV-affected gays finds no hall for screening

On June 29, as Delhi’s saw its first Rainbow Pride March, Sridhar Rangayan was busy trying to organise shows for his latest film, 68 Pages.

Like his previous two films, 68 Pages deals with issues close to Rangayan’s heart — lives of MSMs (men who have sex with men) who have been infected with HIV.

“But for all the hullabaloo about increased awareness about gays, educated urban heterosexuals are still scared to show empathy. There is no aggressive homophobia, but no support either,” shrugs the 45-year-old human rights activist.

Rangayan has reasons to believe so.

His film, which won the Silver Remi at the Houston World Fest earlier this year, is yet to be released in India as no mainstream distributor has come forward to screen it.

“When I made the film, I tried my best to stick to the narrative mode, so the audience could connect with it even if the subject was unfamiliar. But when I met the distributors, I realised it did not matter. They all refused to screen it on ground that a film on homosexuality which talks about AIDS, is not going to bring them any audience,” he says.

In Delhi alone, Rangayan had got in touch with all major multiplex owners, but the experience, he says, has left him rather sceptical.

“The PVR authorities did not respond for the longest time. Finally, when I sent them a rather curt mail, they replied that it did not quite fit even their corporate social responsibility profile.”

68 Pages deals with the lives of five HIV positive individuals — a trans-sexual bar dancer, a gay couple, a sex worker and a drug user — each grappling to come to terms with their own lives.

The story is a narrative from the personal diary of a counsellor who worked with them.

But instead of a bleak, oblique narrative, Rangayan has focussed on the idea of hope and redemption.

He drew his inspiration from the first woman counsellor who worked at his NGO, Humsafar Trust, in Mumbai, one of India’s first organisations to work with sexual minorities. Humsafar Trust is also the co-producer of the film.

The IIT Mumbai alumnus, who has worked with directors like Kalpana Lajmi, Sai Paranjape among others, is now distributing the film via the NGO route.

Humsafar Trust and their associates have come forward to hold a 12-city promotion tour, which includes Mumbai, Baroda, Nagpur, Indore, Chennai, Kolkata and Bangalore.

“We are going to show at auditoriums and hold discussion sessions afterwards, so there is a dialogue. That’s the only way to clear misconceptions,” he says.

In Delhi, Rangayan has found support in Gargi Sen’s Magic Lantern Foundation, an NGO which distributes non-commercial films.

A screening will be held on July 10 at the India International Centre. Naz Foundation, an NGO as well as Kriti, a city-based film club, too are organising screening. Rangayan is also planning to bring out DVDs of the movie.

All these, the director, says, are a small step towards their ultimate goal.

“It’s not just Article 377 which needs amendment. There’s still a long way to go before people’s mindset about alternative sexuality changes,” he says.