This year, the Festival theme reflects upon the disparate notions of realities that exist in Indian cinema.

On one hand, Bollywood films with their spectacular, colorful displays filled with song and dance create a dreamlike space that only tangentially mirrors the realities of every day life in contemporary India. On the other hand, arthouse filmmakers struggle to tell the poignant stories of lives lived by characters that directly draw upon real people living in real cities.

Yet, the pervasive presence of Bollywood imagery now also permeates ever deeper into India's public life. Songs from the latest blockbuster blare out of every corner teastall. Larger than life, the posters of Hindi film stars loom over urban centers. Film songs and dances have now become an integral part of almost every festivity. Bollywood is, almost literally, everywhere. And so we ask ourselves, the inevitable question. For better or worse, is Bollywood now also an Indian reality? 

Festival guests: 
KABIR BEDI - a famous Indian actor. Movies followed by discussions with the guest: Taj Mahal: An Eternal Love Story, Sandokan (second episode) and Kuchhe Dhaage).
BERND LUETZELER - NOMASALA - Movies followed by discussions with the guest: Bombay The City a Indian Visual Innovations (shorts)

C I N E M A    E V A L D

6. 10. 2008 - 17:30 - Amu
A critically acclaimed and controversial directorial debut, Amu is the story of Kaju, a twenty-one-year-old Indian American woman who returns to India to visit her family. The film takes a dark turn as Kaju stumbles against secrets and lies from her past. A horrifying genocide that took place twenty years ago turns out to hold the key to her mysterious origins.

India/USA – 2005 – DVD - 102 min.
directed by: Shonali Bose
cast: Konkona Sen Sharma, Ankur Khanna, Brinda Karat
Bengali/English/Hindi/Punjabi, English subtitles

6. 10. 2008 - 20:00 - Vanaja

Recognized as the “Best Debut” at Berlinale, this film tells the story of Vanaja, the 15 year old daughter of a financially troubled fisherman who goes to work in the local landlady's house in hopes of learning Kuchipudi dance. Set in rural South India, a place where social barriers are built stronger than ancient fort walls, the film explores the chasm that divides classes as a young girl struggles to come of age.

India – 2007 – DVD – 112 min.
directed by: Rajnesh Domalpalli
cast: Mamatha Bhukya, Urmila Dammannagari, Ramachandriah Marikanti
Telugu, English subtitles

7. 10. 2008 - 17:30 - Bombay the City (shorts)

This program has a strong focus on the Indian city as an imaginary space and contradictory place. In 14 short films we explore different angles of Bombay, the home to many people and India's commercial industry Bollywood. Dreams and realities intertwine and traverse the city's media saturated lives as they move towards a cinging almost sarcastic critique of life in Bombay/Mumbai.

moderated by: Bernd Luetzeler (NoMasala, Berlin)
duration: 120 min.
Bengali/English/Hindi/Punjabi, English subtitles

7. 10. 2008 - 20:00 - Unishe April

Sarojini is a famous dancer whose profound dedication to the dance causes the widening of a distance between her daughter and herself following death of her husband. Is she happy with her career and success?

India – 1994 – 35mm – 138 min.
directed by: Rituparno Ghosh
cast: Aparna Sen, Prasenjit Chatterjee, Debashree Roy
Bengali, English subtitles

8. 10. 2008 - 17:30 - Indian Visual Innovations (shorts)

By popular demand, we return with last year's selection of Indian animation shorts. All the 11 films explore different worlds, realities, dreams or fantasies through animation. Through fantasies of super heroes, horror film aesthetics, daydreams, and harsh streetlife realities, all films create their own visual spaces, exploring the possibilities of editing, animation and multimedia in Indian themes and settings.

moderated by: Bernd Luetzeler (NoMasala, Berlin)
duration: 120 min.
Bengali/English/Hindi/Punjabi, English subtitles

8. 10. 2008 - 20:00 - Baghban
This poignant Bollywood family epic tells the story of Raj Malhotra, his wife Pooja and their four sons Ajay, Sanjay, Rohit, and Karan. Troubles begin to brew when Raj Malhotra retires…

India – 2003 – 35mm - 177 min.
directed by: Ravi Chopra
cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Hema Malini, Salman Khan
Hindi, English subtitles

C I N E M A     S V Ě T O Z O R

8. 10. 2008 - 20:30 - small hall - (Audiovisual) - Intersections: Indian dance and Film
This program explores the budding of dance films that draw on India's rich dance traditions. The basic tenets of Indian classical dance were laid down some two thousand years ago in the Sanskrit text, the Natya Shastra. What happens when the gaze of the camera enters into this complex relationship? More...

duration: 70 min
english, czech

9. 10. 2008 - 17:00 - big hall - Om Shanti Om

Om Prakash Makhija is a junior artist in the 1970s film industry who dreams of becoming a 'hero' one day on the big screen. But nothing is at it seems… In this witty homage to Hindi cinema that features unexpected plot twists, dance, comedy, tragedy, reincarnation and more than thirty-two Bollywood stars from yesteryear, Farah Khan proves her mastery in Bollywood filmmaking.

India – 2007 – DVD – 162 min.
directed by: Farah Khan
cast: Shahrukh Khan, Arjun Rampal, Kiron Kher, Deepika Padukone
Hindi, English subtitles

9. 10. 2008 - 20:15 - big hall - Salaam- e- Ishq

In a witty bollywood tale, six couples live in different parts of the world. Ignorant about each others' existence, they end up being brought together by destiny, fate, and love.

India – 2007 – DVD - 216 min.
directed by: Nikhil Advani
cast: Salman Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Anil Kapoor, Govinda
Hindi, English Subtitles

9. 10. 2008 - 17:30 - small hall – Ghare-Baire

Directed by Satyajit Ray, the film begins as a woman recalls the events that molded her perspective on the world. Years ago, her husband, a wealthy Western-educated landowner, challenged tradition by providing her with schooling, and inviting her out of the seclusion in which married women were kept, to the consternation of more conservative relatives.

India – 1984 – 35mm – 140 min.
directed by: Satyajit Ray
cast: Soumitra Chatterjee, Victor Banerjee, Swatilekha Chatterjee
Bengali, English subtitles

9. 10. 2008 - 20:30 - small hall - Mr. and Mrs. 55
An impoverished and struggling cartoonist, Preetam meets Anita at a tennis match. When Anita's father stipulates in his will that Anita will inherit his fortune only if she marries within a month of turning 21. Sita Devi decides to fake a marriage…..

India – 1955 – 35mm – 157 min.
directed by: Guru Dutt
cast: Madhubala, Guru Dutt, Lalita Pawar
Hindi, English subtitles

10. 10. 2008 - 15:30 - big hall – Vanaja

(see film description on October 6)

10. 10. 2008 - 18:00 – big hall - Taj Mahal: An Eternal Love Story
director's cut
From the moment Prince Khurram set eyes on the lovely Arjumand, to when he became Emperor Shah Jahan, and she his muse - Mumtaz Mahal. From a battle for supremacy that saw brothers turn to bitter enemies, to the despair of an emperor - and the end of a golden era. The pristine marble walls tell tales of a family. The family is the royal family of the Moghuls - driven by an overpowering passion of love and hate. At the center of this drama are the young lovers, Prince Khurram, son of Emperor Jahangir and Arjumand, the niece of Empress Noor Jahan. This eagerly anticipated film first appeared in 2004, winning two National Awards for Best Art Direction and Best Costumes. Like many a hyped Bollywood epic, however, it disappointed at the box-office. The determined director has made a Director’s Cut to hit screens with renewed strength.

India – 2008 – DVD – 126 min.
directed by: Akbar Khan
cast: Kabir Bedi, Manisha Koirala, Pooja Batra
Hindi-Urdu, English subtitles
followed by a discussion with Kabir Bedi and Q&A (approx: 30 mins)

10. 10. 2008 - 21:00 – big hall - Partner
Prem lives a wealthy lifestyle in Bombay, India. One day he decides to put his charismatic skill to good use and begins to assist males in the art of seduction of potential brides. His popularity makes him a 'love guru' sought out by many men including Bhaskar D. Chaudhry who has fallen head over heels with his boss, a model and heiress, Priya Jaisingh. Prem decides to help Bhaskar and so embarks on a raucous, humorous Bollywood style journey.

India – 2007 – DVD – 155 min.
directed by: David Dhawan
cast: Salman Khan, Govinda, Lara Dutta, Katrina Kaif
Hindi, English subtitles

10. 10. 2008 - 16:00 – small hall - Laya Project

A tribute to the resilience of the human spirit, Laya Project is a documentary about the lives and music culture of coastal and surrounding communities in the 2004 tsunami-affected regions of Sri Lanka, Thailand, Indonesia, Maldives, Myanmar and India.
This film is part of a collaboration with MOFFOM

India/Malaysia – 2007 – Beta SP - 68 min.
directed by: Harold Monfils
Tamil, Thai, English subtitles

Change of program:

10. 10. 2008 - 17:30 - small hall - Barsaat
Two friends decide to take a holiday in a village in India, not expecting to meet the love of their lives.

India – 1949 – DVD – 171 min.
directed by: Raj Kapoor
cast: Nargis, Raj Kapoor
Hindi, English subtitles

10. 10. 2008 - 20:30 - small hall – Shanu Taxi
Shanu, a simple Mumbai taxi driver is given a cell phone by a customer impressed by his honesty. A man with ambition, he sees in the phone an opportunity that might help him realize his dreams.

India – 2006 – DVD – 15 min.
directed by: Vasant Nath
Hindi, English Subtitles

(see film description on October 6)

11. 10. 2008 - 13:15 - big hall 

Printed Rainbow
An old woman and her cat escape the loneliness and isolation of their apartment in the city through fantastical imaginings inspired by a prized matchbox collection. This film received several international prizes including the FIPRESCI Prize.

India – 2006 – 35mm – 15 min.
directed by: Gitanjali Rao

Return of Hanuman

In this Hindi animation film suitable for adults and children, we follow the adventures of Hindu monkey God Hanuman who decides to help bullied village boy. To do this, he retuns to earth as Maruti a human child who has a small tail. Soon Maruti learns of impending evil that threatens the village and embarks on a brave mission to save his new friends.

India – 2007 – DVD – 105 min.
directed by: Anurag Kashyap
Hindi, English subtitles

11. 10. 2008 - 15:45 – big hall - Rang De Basanti

Sue, a young idealistic English filmmaker, comes to India to make a documentary drama on Bhagat Singh and his contemporaries during the freedom struggle. She recruits a motley group of university students for her project. As the story progresses, freedom fighter legacies begin to intertwine with the protagonists own contemporary lives in unexpected ways. A film about beliefs and courage, this film was not only acclaimed by critics and audiences, but also had a noticeable influence on the Indian social consciousness.

India – 2006 – DVD – 157 min.
directed by: Rakesh Omprakash Mehra
cast: Aamir Khan, Sharman Joshi, Waheeda Rehman
Hindi, English subtitles

11. 10. 2008 - 19:00 - big hall - Race

The tension between two diametrically opposed brothers is brought to boiling point in this stylish Bollywood thriller. Ruthless businessman Ranvir puts his personal feelings for the beautiful Sonia aside when he agrees to let his spoilt younger brother Ranjiv marry her, but only on the condition that he gives up drinking. When Ranjiv breaks his promise, Sonia and Ranvir are drawn closer in their contempt for him. Events are further complicated with betrayals, greed and murder, and soon all hell breaks loose in this explosive drama.

India – 2008 – DVD – 154 min.
directed by: Abbas Alibhai Burmawalla, Mastan Alibhai Burmawalla
cast: Bipasha Basu, Katrina Kaif, Anil Kapoor, Akshaye Khanna
Hindi, English subtitles

11. 10. 2008 - 11:30 – small hall - Khoom Asti Afghanistan?

Indian filmmaker Soumitra Ranade grew up in Kabul as a teenager. Twenty-six years after leaving the country, he returns to post 9/11 Afghanistan to revisit the definitive years of his youth. In a country devastated by war, he rediscovers its beauty through his memories and encounters with its people. Showing a side of Afghanistan often ignored by the Western media, the film takes us on a hopeful journey through the past and present of a country that has yet to see lasting peace.
This film is part of a program curated by Karan Bali, filmmaker and co-founder of

India – 2007 – DVD – 58 min.
directed by: Soumitra Ranade
English, English subtitles

11. 10. 2008 - 13:00 - small hall - I’m very beautiful!

The documentary film follows a man-woman relationship, the woman incidentally being an 'international' bar singer by profession and the man a filmmaker and also, the director of the film. After an extremely modest upbringing in a refugee family, an abduction, a child, suicide attempts and many failed relationships later, Ranu is a total contrast to Shyamal who is well educated, well to do and of course, well respected.
This film is part of a program curated by Karan Bali, filmmaker and co-founder of

India – 2007 – DVD – 65 min.
directed by: Shyamal Kumar Karmakar
Hindi, English subtitles

11. 10. 2008 - 14:30 – small hall

Many People Many Desires

Cutting across class, gender, language and caste, the documentary film tells the stories of gay/bisexual/lesbian persons living in the city of Bangalore.

India – 2004 – DVD – 45 min.
directed by: T. Jayashree
English/Kannada/Tamil/Hindi/Malayalam, English subtitles

I Became...

The short film revolves around a little street child who is looking for some food. We see him walking around the city with his only companion – ‘the balloon.’ Through his journey he observes everything that life has to throw at him.
India – 2006 – DVD – 5 min.
directed by: Arwa Mamaji

Rice Plate

A young film school graduate has written an ‘angry and hungry’ script. His chest thrust out, he marches confidently to the typical commercial Film Producer’s house. The Producer, a ‘life school graduate’, however slams the script. He gives the young Filmmaker some profound words of wisdom, explaining to the rookie what ‘real’ Indian Cinema is all about.
India – 2005 – DVD – 5 min.
directed by: Charudutt Acharya
Hindii, English subtitles

These films are part of a program curated by Karan Bali, filmmaker and co-founder of

11. 10. 2008 - 16:00 – small hall

Holly Bolly

This witty comedy parodies the commercial pressures of filmmaking as two men battle and negotiate stereotypes to pitch their film ideas.

India – 2004 – DVD - 13 min.
directed by: Dishad Husain
cast: Robert Atiko, Honey Kalaria, Riz Meedin

Sunset Bollywood

A struggling actor in Bollywood dreams of his big screen break. It arrives, and he skyrockets to stardom. Becoming number one is easy after all – staying there is the hard part. Overnight success is sought by millions, but what happens when the lights go out? Where are they now? And why did they disappear in the first place?

India – 2005 – DVD – 54 min.
directed by: Komal Tolani
featuring: Rahul Roy, Kumar Gaurav, Bhagyashree
English, English subtitles

11. 10. 2008 - 17:30 - small hall - Sandokan (part 2)

In 1976, Indian actor Kabir Bedi played the lead in Sandokan, a six-part miniseries for European television. We journey back in time to recall the popularity of this series in Czechoslovakia as we re-encounter Sandokan, the unrivalled warrior known throughout Malaysia as the Tiger of Mompracem who leads his men a band of rebel pirates against the forces of colonial oppression. Based on the novels of Emilio Salgari, Sandokan etched Kabir Bedi into Czech popular memory.

Itálie-Francie-NSR-Velká Británie – 1976 – DVD – 66 min.
directed by: Sergio Sollima
cast: Kabir Bedi, Philippe Leroy, Carol André

followed by a discussion with Kabir Bedi and Q&A

11. 10. 2008 - 19:30 - small hall - Jagte Raho

(see film description on October 10)

12. 10. 2008 - 13:15 - big hall - Life in a… Metro

In a departure from glossy narratives, we follow the complex, realistic stories of several people living in Mumbai. Rahul is a young man with dreams, working as a call center executive in a company in Mumbai. He silently loves Neha, a smart young woman who has made it up the ranks in a very short time, due to her relationship with her boss, Ranjeet. In his 30s, Ranjeet is married to Shikha and has a six-year old daughter. Their stories begin to unravel…

India – 2007 – DVD – 131 min.
directed by: Anurag Basu
cast: Dharmendra, Shilpa Shetty, Shiney Ahuja
Hindi, English subtitles

12. 10. 2008 - 15:45 - big hall - Kabhie Alvida Naa Kehna

Dev Saran, a successful soccer player, is unhappily married to Rhea , a hard-working woman who has a high-flying job with a fashion magazine. They have a son named Arjun. Reserved schoolteacher Maya is about to marry her childhood friend Rishi Talwar. Dev happens to meet Maya right before her wedding, and despite being strangers, they connect instantly…. Recognized for its innovative story within the Bollywood aesthetic, the film received several awards and became the biggest Indian grossing film in the United States of all time.

India – 2006 – DVD – 193 min.
directed by: Karan Johar
cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Shahrukh Khan, Rani Mukherjee, Preity Zinta
Hindi, English subtitles

12. 10. 2008 - 19:30 - big hall - Namastey London

Jasmeet "Jazz" Malhotra is an Indian girl in London. Jazz loves everything that is British, she is even engaged to her British millionaire playboy boss. Her father, a man with of Indian values, does not approve. When he plots to bring her to India to marry a a truly Indian boy, Jazz refuses to give in without a fight… How will they reconcile these cultural differences? This is a story about West and East in Bollywood style.

India – 2007 – DVD – 132 min.
directed by: Vipul Amrutlal Shah
cast: Akshay Kumar, Katrina Kaif, Clive Standen
English/Hindi, English subtitles

12. 10. 2008 - 11:30 – small hall - Q2P

“This film explores the question of a futuristic Mumbai and finds not enough public toilets. As this film observes who has to queue to pee, we begin to understand the imagination of gender that underlies the city’s shape and the constantly shifting boundaries between public and private space. We meet whimsical people with novel ideas of social change, which thrive with mixed results…”

India – 2006 – miniDV – 54 min.
directed by: Paromita Vohra
Hindi/Marati, English subtitles

12. 10. 2008 - 13:00 – small hall


Birth, death, rite of passage … gold was integral to every key moment of life in Kerala, and traditional goldsmiths who fashioned beautiful ornaments to mark these moments occupied the most exalted position among all craftsmen. The act of making an ornament was deeply imbued with mythology, poetry, ethics, aesthetics, and a close relationship between the metal, the craftsman, and society. In more recent times gold plays a different, and far more ostentatious, role....

India – 2007 – DVD – 38 min.
directed by: Narayanan AV
Malayalam, English subtitles

US Paar

Naveen works with a religious publisher and has moved into a new colony - the buildings look scarily similar and the landscape barren. He notices Sonali, a colleague. Will she change his destiny?

India – 2007 – DVD – 30 min.
directed by: Anushka Shivdasani Rovshen
Hindi, English subtitles

These films are part of a program curated by Karan Bali, filmmaker and co-founder of

12. 10. 2008 - 14:30 – small hall

Snapshots From a Family Album

Home videos have a way of becoming a document of people’s lives. Intimate and un-self-conscious, they record seemingly This documentary film explores the mundane moments of everyday life that are a study of the family and the forces that drive it. It chronicles a family and its journeys over a period of five years. Language, myths, music, culture…

India – 2004 – DVD – 63 min.
directed by: Avijit Mukul Kishore
Hindi, English subtitles

The Legend of Fat Mama

The happy-sad story of the Chinese community in Calcutta. Of a woman who once made the most delicious noodles in the city. Of street food and disappearing eateries, a printing press that “hand writes” the newspapers and the first all-woman dragon dance group. There is pain and hurt too. At the treatment the Chinese received after the Indo-China war (similar to the Japanese-American experience).

India – 2006 – DVD – 24 min.
directed by: Rafeeq Ellias
English, Hindi, Chinese, English subtitles

These films are part of a program curated by Karan Bali, filmmaker and co-founder of

12. 10. 2008 - 16:00 – small hall - Kuchhe Dhaage

Lakhan and Roopa are sworn enemies, bound by a vicious drive for revenge. Everything changes when Sona, an innocent village girl, enters their lives. Brought together by their hopeless love, the two men find themselves fighting together to save Sona’s reputation in the village. Today a Hindi cinema classic, this film also helped propel Kabir Bedi further in his prolific acting career.

India – 1973 – DVD – 177 min.
directed by: Raj Khosla
cast: Kabir Bedi, Vinod Khanna, Moushumi, Nirupa Roy
Hindi, English subtitles
followed by a discussion with Kabir Bedi and Q&A

12. 10. 2008 - 20:00 - small hall - Manthan

Shyam Benegal’s masterpiece relates the story of a young urban group headed by a veterinary doctor sent to a poor village to start a milk cooperative. As the villagers try to work together, old and new hostilities begin to surface. In a remarkable departure from normal funding strategies, 500,000 Gujarati farmers donated few rupees each to create the film. The first communally financed film in India, Manthan created a pattern later replicated by other film projects.

India – 1976 – 35mm - 134 min.
directed by: Shyam Benegal
cast: Girish Karnad, Smita Patil, Amrish Puri
Bengali, English subtitles


The party on October 11 in PM Klub (Trojická 8, Praha 2) will be a rare opportunity to witness several dances inspired by both Bollywood and classical Indian dance. Perfomers will include BOLLY NATYAM, ČHINGER-PHAGER, AFROLATINO! and BERRAK YEDEK. The night will resonate with Bollywood music courtesy of DJ duo MUNICH MASALA (from Munich).
It all begins at 10pm!