Tag Archives: Mani Kaul

Mani Kaul – Yatrik AKA Passenger (1966)

Mani Kaul’s early short film Read More »

Mani Kaul – Satah Se Uthata Aadmi aka Arising From The Surface (1980)

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Kaul’s film addresses the writings of Gajanan Madhav Muktibodh (1917-79), one of the main representatives of the Nai Kavita (New Poetry) movement in Hindi. Muktibodh also wrote several short stories, one of which provides the film with its title, and critical essays. The film integrates episodes from Muktibodh’s writings with material from other source, including a reinvented neo-realism derived from Muktibodh’s literary settings. The narrative is constructed around 3 characters. Ramesh (Gopi) iis one who speaks and enacts Muktibodh’s writings, functioning as the first-person voice of the text; his two friends, , Madhav (Jha) and Keshav (Raina), are Ramesh’s antagonists and interlocuters esp. in the debates about modernity. Kaul gradually minimizes the fictional settings until, in the remarkably shot sequences of the factory, the audience is directly confronted with the written text itself. Read More »

Mani Kaul – Before My Eyes (1988)

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This is the film that left the strongest impression on me. I have been lucky to engage it 3 times on 35mm.

Mani Kaul’s films create a sensory construct around their use of a selection of sounds to create a specific sensorial effect and images to create volume instead of (as in Hollywood) their denotative element of space. His films usually attempt to create an aesthetic where language is used beyond its denotative aspect, into its suggestive and rhythmic tonalities based on Anandvardhan’s 4th century text Dhwanyaloka about haiku like poetry forms and the aesthetic of suggestion they create known as ‘Dhwani’ which means ‘suggestive sound.’ Read More »

Mani Kaul – Mati Manas AKA The Mind of Clay (1985)

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In a poetic hour and a half, director Mani Kaul looks at the ancient art of making pottery from a wide variety of perspectives. Pots are shown in many settings, including a museum where a young child is mesmerized by the ceramics that ancient ancestors created from clay. The tradition continues and so does its magic, as potters are shown deftly working a lump of wet clay and fashioning it moment by moment into a slowly emerging shape. Kaul blends in myth and fables as well as the beauty of the art itself to create an inspiring look at a humble, everyday object. Read More »