Land Gold Women puts focus on honour killings

Louis B. Hobson- Calgary Herald
This year’s Oscar for best documentary short went to Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy’s A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness.

It focused on the plight of an 18-year-old girl in Pakistan who incurred the wrath of her father and uncle when she eloped with a man she loved who was not her family’s choice for her.

As Obaid-Chinoy explained in her acceptance speech, every year more than 1,000 young girls and women fall victim to barbaric religious practices which sanction honour killings.

Moved by the international outcry surrounding Obaid-Chinoy, the president of Pakistan announced he will have his justice ministers look into changing the laws that protect the men from any repercussions especially if it is a family member who dies at their hands.

Watching the Oscars, and especially the win for A Girl in the River, Niru Bhati, the artistic director of Calgary’s Hidden Gems Film Festival, knew she had to find a film about honour killings for Hidden Gem’s March offering.

Bhati also knew that film had to be Avantika Hari’s 2011 award-winning film Land Gold Women, so she called the filmmaker at her home in England to get permission to screen the film on March 20 at 2:30 p.m. in the amphitheatre of the Alberta College of Arts & Design in the building adjacent to the Jubilee Auditorium.

“When we see films about honour killings in Pakistan or India — and there are some very disturbing ones — it’s too easy to dismiss the subject because it’s happening in those countries,” Bhati says.

“The thing about Land Gold Women is that it is set in contemporary Birmingham and the father is not an uneducated man. He teaches at the University of Birmingham.

“It’s only when his very traditional brother arrives from Pakistan that he is drawn back into a cultural mindset that condones punishment for women who disobey their fathers,” says Bhati.

“This man’s great dilemma is whether to risk losing his daughter or all family ties.

“He’s not a monster but what he might do is definitely monstrous.”

Bhati says the film also “looks at how western countries try to punish these cultural crimes in modern courts and that is not always easy.

“It also asks very clearly and effectively what’s honourable about any killing.”

Bhati stresses that Land Gold Women is “not only a timely film but the only one I thought was appropriate for our audiences.”

While she had Hari on the phone, Bhati asked if she could also screen the filmmaker’s short film Hat Day, which had impressed Bhati for its ability to move audiences in such a brief time.

“Anushka was thrilled that I wanted to show Hat Day as short films get so little exposure.”

Tickets are $15 at the door for cash only.

The popular Chai Cafe opens from 1:30 to 2:15 p.m.

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Controversial comedy The Interview makes debut on Apple iTunes

The controversial movie The Interview has finally made its debut on iTunes which is available to rent for six dollars or buy for 15 dollars.

The controversial comedy that was released in independent cinemas in the U.S. on Christmas, has since been available on YouTube Movies, Google Play, Xbox and a dedicated Sony-built website Seetheinterview.com, reported CNET.

Sony Pictures had initially cancelled the release of the movie following a cyberattack and threats to moviegoers.

The U.S. linked the cyber attack to North Korea after sensitive studio information was publicly released.

North Korea has denied involvement in the Sony hack and said that the movie that depicts a fictional plot to assassinate the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was insensitive.

However, Apple has not yet commented on the iTunes debut of the movie. (ANI)

Avatar 2 to begin casting in LA, Wellington soon

Wellington, Oct 17 (ANI): The sequel to the 2009 blockbuster film ‘Avatar’ would soon begin to cast for the project in New Zealand and America.

 

According to Stuff.co.nz, Miramar-based The Casting Company would be handling the casting in New Zealand for ‘Avatar 2’, which would be the first of three upcoming sequels to the James Cameron’s film.

 

Cameron would return to helm the project while actors Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana and Sigourney Weaver reprise their roles from the original film, which had grossed more than 3.5 billion dollars worldwide, and had become the highest-grossing movie of all time.

 

The movie would follow directly from its predecessor and would begin filming in New Zealand in 2015.

Movie trailers are less-shared types of film content

Washington, Oct 17 (ANI): A new research has revealed that movie trailers aren’t most-shared movie content.

 

According to the Hollywood Reporter, the social video advertising platform Unruly’s study showed that the prank-based viral videos or “prankverts,” stand-alone micro-movies and music videos are the most-shared types of movie content over the past 12 months.

 

Unruly’s U.S. president Richard Kosinski said that Consumers are also experiencing “content shock” as the smart advertisers are creating memorable content by generating intense emotional responses in viewers and breaking away from traditional trailers.

 

Kosinski added that the top three most-shared videos of the past 12 months are prankverts or, in the case of Frozen, a trackvert or a video based around a song, like Frozen’s ubiquitous ‘Let It Go.’

 

The study found that films that go beyond the trailer are generating cut-through and social buzz in a competitive, trailer-heavy media landscape.