This volume examines the phenomenon of popular Indian cinema from the silent films of the 1930s to contemporary blockbusters. Individual essays engage with the political implications of popular cinema by exploring it - through formal and narrative analysis, archival resources and oral testimony - as an arena for contests of political identity, social regulation and aesthetic hierarchies. How does the imaginative world of a popular film invite an audience to reflect on its relationship to social and political power? How do censorship, the civic administration, public lobbies, film criticism and fan clubs shape the contexts in which we see films and the value that we give them?
Such issues are examined across a range of key films that include the DMK's Parasakthi; the Bengali Harano Sur; Mehboob Khan's Andaz; Raj Kapoor's Awara; the classic Deewar (which introduced Amitabh Bachchan); Mani Ratnam's Roja; Raj Kumar Santoshi's Damini; Shankar's Kadaalan/Hum Se Hai Muguabla; Yash Chopra's Darr and Abbas-Mustan's Baazigar.
Given the relative dearth of critical material in this field, this volume will appeal to the specialist as well as the general reader interested in a serious study of Indian films.
About the Author :
Ravi S. Vasudevan is Fellow, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, New Delhi and Co-Director, Sarai, the new media initiative. He has taught film studies at universities in India and USA and is visiting faculty at the Department of Film Studies, Jadavpur University. He is also a well-known film critic.
Excerpts From Reviews:
'Growing out of a seminar on Indian cinema...this volume of essays is intellectually stimulating and impressive in its range of materials and approaches.' - The Telegraph
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