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Film & DVD

South Asian Film Festival returns to Enzian

Asian Cultural Association brings Mumbai to Maitland for 19th year

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11 a.m. Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 28-29 | Enzian Theater, 1300 S. Orlando Ave., Maitland | 407-629-0054 | enzian.org | $10-$35

Experiencing film fest withdrawal and can’t wait for the Orlando Film Festival to start on October 16? Enzian Theater may just have your remedy in the form of the 19th annual South Asian Film Festival, which showcases the cultures of India and Pakistan through films both from and about those countries.

Held this Saturday and Sunday, the event includes four features and one short. The comedy Jadoo (preceded by the short doc Unravel), the political thriller The Reluctant Fundamentalist and the epic Midnight’s Children are the narrative features, with Salma being the lone full-length documentary.

A pass to the entire festival, which is co-presented by the Asian Cultural Association, costs $35, while a single ticket is $10. See enzian.org/festivals/south_asian for details. – CM


(feature, 83 minutes; screens 11 a.m. Saturday)
★★ (out of 5 stars)

With Jadoo, his second feature film, writer-director Amit Gupta plants himself in the Anglo-South-Asian tradition, although the tone of his comedy is more reminiscent of Bend It Like Beckham than, say, My Beautiful Laundrette. Instead of an East-meets-West culture clash, however, Jadoo gives us two feuding brothers (Kulvinder Ghir and Harish Patel) who have not spoken since the catastrophic falling-out that sundered their family restaurant — and its recipe book — 10 years ago. The film doles out its moments of broad humor and pathos with the predictability of a sitcom, as the family’s favorite daughter (Amara Karan) devises a scheme to reconcile the two brothers so that they can cater the food at her traditional Indian wedding. Nothing like a high-stakes curry cook-off (judged by Madhur Jaffrey herself) to bring people together! Jadoo is an affable enough movie, with generous helpings of Indian food porn, but it never rises above standard fare. – AP

(documentary short, 14 minutes; screens 11 a.m. Saturday)
★★★ (out of 5 stars)

“I’ve always wanted to see a Western person,” says one of the factory workers in Meghna Gupta’s color-drenched short doc, which screens just before Jadoo on Saturday morning. Instead, she gets to see their clothing: the 100,000 tons of discarded clothing that cross the ocean on ships “as big as houses” and are then carried on trucks nearly as big to the textile recycling factory in a tiny North Indian town. Amid heaps of used clothing sorted by color and the sounds of machines mashing and teasing the old fabric into new thread for blankets to be shipped back across the sea, the women workers muse about the people who send them these clothes. Gupta’s camera captures them as they twirl in discarded wedding dresses, hold up skimpy bathing suits, and try to imagine a people wealthy enough to throw away perfectly good clothing. Yet Unravel is not an exposé in the traditional sense; it lets the tall tales of the workers and the small mountains of clothing do the talking. – AP

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