Regional & World cinema appreciated

PTI, PANAJI | 02 December 2007 23:56 IST

The 38th edition of International Film Festival of India (IFFI) 2007 witnessed around 200 works of cinematic excellence sans Bollywood glamour, making it a delight for viewers who relish regional and international flavours.

Housed in an erstwhile dilapidated hospital complex, which was refurbished at a cost of Rs 14 crore by Goa government, the festival saw Pakistani film "Khuda ke liye" becoming the hot favourite among a bouquet of other serious works emphasising more on regional films.

Romanian film "Four months, Three Weeks and Two Days," winner of Golden Palm Award, Festival de Cannes 2007, inaugurated the festival. While Portuguese-Spanish film "Fados" was the concluding film for Asia's oldest film festival, which is being held for the fourth year in a row in Goa.

Manipuri films made their entry after a lull of 11 years in the festival, which went at a much smoother pace without any fights this time, with Bollywood absence from the festival receiving mixed reactions.

Except for Dev Anand, Raima Sen, Pankaj Kapoor, Supriya Pathak, Bhavana Talwar and few others, Bollywood glitz was missing from the ten-day extravaganza.

The festival also saw the mainstream cinema section being deleted from the itinerary. The section is usually dominated by Hindi films. "This was a conscious decision. Also, we could not get the sub-titled films," Director of Film festival Neelam Kapoor told a press conference on Monday.

The choice of films for Indian Panorama section was much appreciated by delegates. The section had 21 feature and 15 non-feature films comprising two movies each of Bengali filmmaker Buddhadeb Dasgupta and South Indian filmmaker Adoor Gopalkrishnan.

The festival was held across seven screens. For the first time, today, the organizers declared dropping of a theatre from the venue citing technical reasons.

The screening glitches had irked a renowned South Indian filmmaker acting upon whose complaint the organisers decided to drop the venue cancelling three films, which were supposed to have repeat shows there.

Also for the first time, the organisers had introduced ticketing concept for the delegates, filmmakers and media.

After initial hiccups, the ticketing system helped the organisers -- Directorate of Film Festival and Entertainment Society of Goa to do away with the long queues and chaos at the cinema halls.

"The system will continue in future," Kapoor said talking about the ticketing system which is a concept synonym with international film festivals across the globe.

The latest record available from Directorate of Film Festival (DFF) revealed that around 3,500 delegates had registered for the festival till the last date. There was a posse of 300 mediapersons who covered the festivities.

Besides, the organisers had done away with the peripheral activities near venues, this year, eliminating the rush. Instead, the activities were planned at ten different venues across the state including Baina beach, the erstwhile red light area.

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