The International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK), beginning on December 7, presents a special package of six films that blends of two genres associated with entertainment-- cinema and theatre. The package consists of six theatre films; three from United States, two from India and one from Russia.
The two films from India are Aravindan’s Kanchana Sita and Jayarajan’s Kaliyattam. The movie Kanchana Sita is adapted from the Uttara Kanda of the poetic epic Ramayana, where Rama sends his wife Sita to the forest for satisfying his subjects. Sita is not shown throughout the movie but her virtual presence is felt in each mood of the forest. The film won National Award for Best Direction.
The film Kaliyattam, Starring Suresh Gopi, Manju Warrier and Biju Menon, is actually an adaptation of Shakespeare's Othello. Suresh Gopi plays Kannan Perumalayam, equivalent to Othello; and Manju Warrier plays Thamara, the Desdemona version.
Of the three films from the U. S., one, Equus, is a British-American production. The 1977 film directed by Sidney Lumet featured Richard Button, Peter Firth, Colin Blakely, Joan Plowright, Eileen Atkins, and Jenny Agutter.
Psychiatrist Martin Dysart investigates the savage blinding of six horses with a metal spike in a stable at Hampshire, England. The atrocity was committed by an unassuming 17-year-old stable boy named Alan Strang, the only son of Frank Strang and his wife Dora. As Dysart exposes the truths behind the boy's demons, he finds himself face to face with his own.
Streetcar Named Desire (1951), the Oscar winning film featured in the package, is a steamy classic adapted by Tennesse Williams from his own award winning play of the same name. It was directed by Independent director Elia Kazan who insisted on the film being true to the play.
The film tells the pathetic story of a once wealthy Southern lady named Blanche.
The film Romeo and Juliet, starring Leonard Whiting and Olivia Hussey, is also part of the package. Directed and co-written by Franco Zeffirelli, the film won Academy Awards for best cinematography and best costume design.
The lone film from Russia is 140- minute-long Hamlet directed by Grigori Kozinstev, a founder member of the Russian avant-garde artist group "Factory of the Eccentric Actor”.