Suhana safar aur yeh mausam haseen.
The haunting evergreen song from the film Madhumati (1958) can also speak for the 100 memorable years of Indian cinema from 1913 to 2013. Which is perhaps why the state government has named the film festival to honour the century-old journey Suhana Safar.
At chief minister Arjun Munda’s behest, the state government is organising a four-day film festival between September 12 and 15 in association with the Directorate of Film Festivals in India (DFFI) to mark the 100 years of Indian cinema.
For four days, films that have had a seminal impact will be screened at the two-screen Sujata Cinema in Ranchi. An inaugural function and related events such as seminars on films have been planned at the adjacent Ranchi Club.
The state’s information and public relations department (IPRD) has drawn up an impressive list of films to make viewers go down memory reels. “It is still a tentative list,” IPRD director Alok Gupta said, but said that it included some obvious and some quite off-beat choices.
Dadasaheb Phalke’s Raja Harishchandra (1913) is there, as this is the film that started the whole suhana safar of Indian cinema.
Other probables in the Hindi language included Guru Dutt’s Kagaz Ke Phool (1959), Vijay Anand’s Guide (1965), Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s Anand (1971) and even recent films like Jab We Met (2007). Regional cinema probables included Bimal Roy’s Udayer Pathey (Bengali, 1944), Aparna Sen’s Mr and Mrs Iyer (English. 2002), Rituparno Ghosh’s Dahan and Chokher Bali (Bengali, 1997 and 2003), A.K. Bir’s Shesha Drusti (Odia, 1997), Chandra Prakash Dwivedi’s Pinjar (Hindi/Urdu/Punjabi, 2003) and Mani Rathnam’s Kannathil Muthamittal (Tamil, 2002).
“We are planning to screen regional films made here in Santhali and Nagpuri as well as a children’s film,” Gupta added. “Our aim is to reach out to the maximum possible film buffs. We’ve even opened a Facebook account to publicise the event.”