Author: Aruna Vasudev
Latika Padgaonkar/Rashmi Doraiswamy
Editor: Aruna Vasudev, Latika Padgaonkar & Rashmi Doraiswa
ISBN/UPC (if available): 0333 93820 8
The essays contributed to this volume by eminent historians and film critics bring together the history and current trends in the cinemas of thirty countries of Asia. It provides a bird’s eyeview of cinema in Asia, and traces the evolution of this Art, its aesthetics, themes and styles, its impact..
Authored by twenty-nine eminent historians and film critics, almost all of them from the countries they are writing about, these essays bring together the history and the current trends in the cinemas of thirty countries of Asia-from Japan to India to Turkey and Kazakhstan to Indonesia. Asian cinemas stormed on to the world scene with an emphatic flourish some two decades ago. Overnight, the names of hitherto lesser known Asian directors and stars entered the film vocabulary of film circles all over the world.
In Asia itself, new festivals sprang up, while on an international level, Asian films garnered awards and accolade. But their evolution as an art form, the cultural and political milieu in which they were made, the factors that propelled them or sometimes led to their decline, still remained largely unknown.
It is this lacunae that The Cinemas of Asia, the first comprehensive book of its kind, strives to fill. It does not claim to cover the entire region, but by virtue of its sheer scope and diversity of content, necessarily provides a bird’s eyeview of cinema in Asia. It traces the evolution of the 7th Art, its aesthetics, themes and styles, its impact upon society and the role of governments. All this is located within the social and political climate which defines a context for filmmakers.
It offers a glimpse not only into the manner and the reasons for which cinema developed as it did, but also into the organic links between cinema, literature and the performing arts. It examines the impetus for cinema’s development or the reasons for its stagnation, at different moments as the case may be. It is a telling, and oftentimes, even a sobering picture that emerges through this collection. It offers an approach to Asian cinema, which is serious without being academic, all the while communicating the excitement for a cinema which is yet to be fully explored.
As everywhere in the world, cinema in Asia began as a monumental adventure. It married fantasy and festivity, curiosity and fun; everywhere, it was an awe-inspiring social event. Both the creator and the audience were wonder-struck by this new, magical invention. It took no time, however, for the power of cinema as a political tool to be discovered. As much in countries under communism as in those fighting foreign dominance, cinema became a ready tool of propaganda-propaganda for war and, equally, propaganda for nation-building within a specific ideology, even as it grew into an important vehicle of revolutionary ideals.
At the same time, it matured into an unrivalled form of artistic expression. And it is in all its multiple shapes that this book pays homage to the cinemas of Asia.. in the many layers of life it unveils, in the unexpected yet fundamental links it reveals between peoples- links that go beyond what is specific to each culture and in the intrinsic power of the cinematic art itself.
BANGLADESH : A Defiant Survivor
-Zakir Hossain Raju
TAJIKISTAN : Landmarks of Tajik Cinema
TAJIKISTAN: Turmoil Takes Its Toll
UZBEKISTAN: Share History, Many Destinies
CHINA: Reframing History
HONG KONG : Zest and Anguish
INDIA : House Full, No Intermission
-Chidananda Das Gupta
INDONESIA : In Two Worlds
-Marseth Sumarno and Nan Triveni Achnas
IRAN: Close- up
IRAN : Stars Within Reach
ISRAEL: Coming of Age
JAPAN: The Tatami & The Sword
KOREA: Troughs & Crests
SOUTH KOREA: The Politics of Memory
MALAYSIA: Gentle Winds of Change
-Hassan Muthalib and Wong Tuck Cheong
PAKISTAN: A Diffused Light
PHILIPPINES : Side-Stepping History Beginnings to 1980s
- Luis H Francia
PHILIPPINES: Liver & Alive ( 1990s-2001)
-Clodualdo del Mundo, Jr
SINGAPORE: Starting Over
SRI LANKA : Calm Beneath the Storm
-Robert Crusz and Ashley Ratnavibhushana
TAIWAN: In and Out of Shadows
THAILAND: Endearing Afterglow
TURKEY : On Its Qwn terms
VIETNAM: A Time to die, a Time to Live
-Ngo Phuong Lan
SOUTH VIETNAM: Sunny Side Up
WEST ASIA : Making Films in Fertile Crescent
IRAQ, LEBANON, PALESTINE, SYRIA