Tuesday, October 11, 2005

films of interest (1): Khamosh Pani ("Silent Waters")

Three years ago, I conceived the idea of launching a DVD production and distribution venture, and began work in that direction. I learned the ropes of DVD authoring, and managed to purchase (via a lease-to-buy deal -- paying $260 per month, it'll all be paid off in a few more months) professional authoring software [Sonic Scenarist]. I explored what works interested me, contacted filmmakers, etc. This began to get more specific when (about a year ago) I focused the diverse ideas into a first tangible project: a DVD series styled Digital Atelier -- comprised entirely of works produced in digital video. I boiled it down to an initial list of six such works, which I felt I could release at the modest pace of one every two months, for a first year's series. If things worked well, we could expand to one Digital Atelier title per month in a 2nd year. Sales to be primarily thru the OtherShore website. If I can attract a mere couple hundred-or-so regular subscribers, the operation becomes solvent and self-funding. And it then can grow in many directions.

Some of those further directions include expanding into other series (I've several up my sleeves, waiting in the conceptual wings), as well as small-press book publishing (will discuss the latter in future -- the Rasika Editions imprint).

I was gearing up to launch Digital Atelier in the (now bygone) springtime, but (stubbing toes on various hurdles) have not yet gotten it out the gate. I work fulltime (as a wordprocessor in law firm), have other activities & obligations, and furthermore ran into cashflow issues etc.; the thing got delayed, -- and I've a scad of additional work to complete before it happens. Still, we're not so far from manifest reality; God-willing, I'll get this in gear for initial DVD releases starting to roll out circa early next year.

Later, I'll launch a separate blog relating to this DVD initiative. My (sadly) back-burnered (OtherShore) website meanwhile needs to get overhauled & fully developed. The purchase interface hasn't yet been designed; and many other aspects need to be developed as well. After I return from tvavels (which will consume most of November) -- if not sooner -- I'll direct full focus to that project.

The apparently patient (or resigned) superb filmmakers I've lined up for the initial Digital Atelier salvo haven't been bugging me about this; but I'll need to approach them with a rich cart of apologies-for-delay, cheer-for-future, and general enthus & energy: resources I feel remain at my beck. For the world's riches are with us, even if our hands are slow learners of the craft & dance of fruit-distribution. The trees are rife, the boughs hang low, the fruit is superb -- delicious & nutritious! And some time, it seems, remains still in the hourglass, although the sand does flow.

Anyway, meanwhile:
Herewith I'll launch a blog series [films of interest], noting certain films that come to attention -- for general interest, and perhaps (also) as potential titles to ponder for poss. DVD release in the US (when OtherShore finally gets in gear).

A blog is handy for such notes & tendrils! What with COMMENTS annotation, those who've seen the film (or the filmmakers themselves on occasion) might perhaps offer a word of feedback about things I've not (as yet) seen. In hayday of my early stab at DVD entreprenerialism, I would tend immediately to track down & email the filmmakers and launch into rosy discussions of release possibilities. I'm a bit more moderate in thinking right now (aware of limitations & things-yet-to-do); but that need not full-stop the flow of awareness & curiousity: one should keep eyes open and ears to the ground anent what's afoot in the quietly-growing realm of this remarkably rich world medium.

I could (if I took 5-6 hours) write ins-&-outs nonstop about this topic ad nauseum (or ad absurdum -- or, anyway, at some length). But I'll not just now go into all the tales, ideas, and works I've stashed up various sleeves (in a metaphorical shirt that must've been fitted for a being with many more than 2 upper extremities). Let me unfold such things in later musings. Likely in OtherShore's (not yet manifest) own blog ... further along into our here-autumn or anon-winter.

Now, I'll note one new (to me) film-of-interest. Got the report from a blog just now, from blogger in Delhi self-styled Purple Passion, here.

The film's reviewed here.
Director is Sabiha Sumar (born 1961).
Writer is Paromita Vohra.
Khamosh Pani. Silent Waters. A lovely title. A Pakistani village. Fiction, 99 minutes.
Khamosh Pani played at Rotterdam: a festival whose selections are oftentimes worth noticing.

For Digital Atelier's first title -- Jon Jost's London Brief -- I'm designing a booklet to accompany the DVD, featuring a talk Jost gave at that festival in 1999. Jost described the technology & advantages of DV [digital video}, as a low-budget filmmaking medium of promise. His observations -- at the remove of a few years now -- remain worth noting, appreciating, and holding up against the pattern of work that's been done (most of it not adequately available to its potential audience) in this swift interim of half a dozen years.

But now: have you seen Khamosh Pani? Care to share thoughts & impressions! (in handy comment), hmmm?

with thanks,


Blogger Me said...

I have seen it and must say that it was a good movie. But it does suffer from something which I would like to call "overtly emotional". There are many places in the movie where I think silence would have proved a better substitute to the emotional dialogues used. But we have to consider the fact that it is a product of the subcontinent which thrives on melodrama.

Tue Oct 11, 09:24:00 AM PDT  
Blogger david raphael israel said...


thanks for your interesting remarks here. Your cinema sensibility is interesting to get these snippets of.

Will reply to your note in other thread (regarding Aldus Huxley etc.) at a later point; [am just amid my daily work grind].

cheers, d.i.

Tue Oct 11, 09:51:00 AM PDT  

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