Pro Tools
•Register a festival or a film
Submit film to festivals Promote for free or with Promo Packages

FILMFESTIVALS | 24/7 world wide coverage

✨✨

Enjoy the best of both worlds: Portal with Film & Fest News and Social network for the festival community.  

Since 1995 we enjoy connecting films to festivals and document the world of festivals worldwide.
We offer the most comprehensive festival directory of 7 000 festivals, browse festival blogs, film blogs...and promote yourself.

The website is currently being redesigned, we will surprise you very soon.

User login

Siraj Syed


Siraj Syed is the India Correspondent for FilmFestivals.com and a member of FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics. He is a Film Festival Correspondent since 1976, Film-critic since 1969 and a Feature-writer since 1970. 

 

feed

MAMI’s MFF, Diary, Part II: 7th IFFM

    MAMI’s MFF Diary, Part II: 7th IFFM, Jan. 6-13, 2005, Mumbai, India IFFM was into its 7th year when I returned from Singapore for good, and made got the first opportunity to attend the festival. Covering it for the academic publication, Kinema, I wrote: MAMI, the acronym for the body that organises the International Film Festival of Mumbai (IFFM), stands for Mumbai Academy of Moving Image. That’s a curiously old-fashioned name for a body that was set up only about ei...

Festival diary, MAMI’s Mumbai Film Festival (MFF), Part I

Back in the mid 90s, a group of Mumbai-based film-enthusiasts felt that it was time the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) stopped alternating every year between New Delhi and other metro cities like Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Thiruvananthapuram and Mumbai, and settled down in Mumbai for good. Some of the strong factors in favour were: 1. Mumbai is the birth place of Indian cinema and the film capital of India, although films are made aplenty in other cities as well. 2....

MAMI's Mumbai Film Festival: ***+ 5/16 is not a bad score, at any festival

Of the 16 full films that I saw at MAMI's MFF, 5 ranked ***1/2 or more, which is my criterion for finding a film really above the cut. Five more scored ***, which is not bad at all. They are not above the cut, but at the cut. Six were let downs, and I walked out of seven others, at various stages into the screen journey. To be fair, those seven have not been ranked at all, nor have I written their brief reviews. Adding them all, a tally of 16 complete viewings, and seven partial is a ...

What If, Review: The F Word is a Fun Watch

What If What If (alternate title The F Word) is the story of medical school dropout Wallace, who's been repeatedly scarred by bad relationships. So, while everyone around him, including his room-mate Allan seems to be finding the perfect partner, Wallace decides to put his love life on hold. It is then that he meets Chantry, a flirty animator who lives with her long-time boy-friend, Ben. Wallace and Chantry form an instant connection, striking up a close friendship, that includes bonding ...

Left Behind, Review: Vital stuff left behind

Left Behind A reboot of Left Behind: The Movie, Left Behind is an apocalyptic film, based on the New York Times’ bestselling novel, that brings biblical prophecy to life in the present day world--and on board an aeroplane, during a transatlantic flight, piloted by the protagonist. The biblical Rapture strikes the world. Millions of people disappear without a trace. All that remains are their clothes and belongings, terror and chaos spread around the world. The vanishings cause unmanned...

Annabelle, Review: Baby, Doll and the Possession

Annabelle: Baby, Doll and the possession In the milieu of The Conjuring, comes Annabelle. The film starts with the same opening scene from The Conjuring, in which two young women and a young man in 1968 are telling paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren about their experience with a doll they believe to be haunted, known as Annabelle. From there, it goes back in time one year to tell the tale of how the doll came to be imbued with the demonic force that resides within it. John (Ward...

Jagran Film Festival: Last stop Mumbai

                                          5th Jagran Film Festival to be held in Mumbai, from 22nd to 28th September, 2014 After touring movie buffs in 15 cities, the 5th Jagran Film Festival will conclude ​in Mumbai, from Monday,22nd September,2014 to Sunday, 28th September, 2014 at PVR Cinemas, Andheri and Cinemax, Versova. ...

The Prince, Review: Assassin Prince, drug King and two Princesses

The Prince: Assassin Prince, Drug King and two Princesses The Prince is the latest offering from Grand Rapids-born director Brian A. Miller. Shot in Alabama in late 2013, the film was given a limited theatrical release on Aug. 22, 2014, and became available as Video on Demand (VoD) the same day. Three weeks later, it gets its theatrical release in India. It is one of two movies Miller shot back-to-back with Bruce Willis in Alabama. The sci-fi film Vice, which is scheduled for release in 2015,...

Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, Review: ...and a Dame Who Kills

Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, Review: …and a Dame Who Kills Comics icon Frank Miller and director Robert Rodriguez return nine years after their first trip to Sin City, a four-story compendium outing that had Quentin Tarantino as guest director and Frank Miller in a cameo, as a priest. It was a highly unlikely partnership. Their association began when Miller got a call from Robert Rodriguez (Spy Kids 1 and 2, Desperado). Rodriguez made him a simple offer: Come to Texas for a day. If yo...

Life of Crime, Review: Black comedy with grey areas

Life of Crime: Black comedy with grey areas Elmore Leonard's novel The Switch has been adapted for the screen as Life of Crime by director Daniel Schechter. It is not in the same league as Jackie Brown or Get Shorty. Attempted as a black comedy, it is not black enough (one lead actor being black notwithstanding) nor is it comic enough (some lines and situations are admittedly funny). In the late 70s, the wife (Jennifer Aniston) of a corrupt real estate developer (Tim Robbins) is kidnappe...

Crossing Bridges, Review: Country Roads, take me home

Crossing Bridges: Country Roads, take me to home, to Arunachal If you are likely to be moved to deep emotions and tears by the idea of a Mumbai-based IT professional rediscovering his remote countryside roots in North-East India, and making the life-defining move of permanent homecoming, you will most likely feel you have a seen a minor classic. On the other hand, if you distance yourself and assess the film on merit, you are more likely to feel that it is a well-intentioned film which draws ...

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Review: Four turtles, One rat, One Shredder and One Fox

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Review: Four turtles, One rat, One Shredder, One Fox New York City is under attack by an evil gang, the Foot Clan, so-called because they trample everything.  They have an iron grip on everything, from the police to the politicians. Their leader is Shredder, a Japanese Ninjitsu Sensei (Tohoru Masamune), who raised the evil billionaire, Eric Sachs (William Fichtner), in Japan, and now works with him. When they learn about this, four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtl...

The November Man, Review: Bond meets Bourne meets John Le Carre

                                                 The November Man: Bond meets Bourne meets John Le Carré  Four times James Bonder Pierce Brosnan and the franchise parted company about a dozen years ago. Shortly after that, he started making plans to film a spy novel quite different from Bond sagas. It took ten years to materialise, but materialise it did. So,...

Gandhi director Attenborough leaves a rich legacy

            Gandhi director Richard Attenborough leaves a rich legacy Surviving ten testing years, actor-director-producer Lord Richard Attenborough (Life Peer-1993, CBE-1967, knighted-1976, Padma Bhushan-1983), breathed his last on 24 August 2014, five days short of his 91st birthday. For many in the film fraternity, the face of British cinema has faded out. For millions in India, it is the passing away of the Englishman who immortalised the Father of the Ind...

The Expendables 3, Review: Gen Ex+Gen Next

The Expendables 3: Generation Ex+Gen Next “The challenge was to write literally 16 main characters in a two-hour movie, and how often do you get to write for Zorro, the Terminator, Rocky, Indiana Jones and Mad Max?”—Creighton Rothenberger and Katrin Benedikt, co-writers, The Expendables 3. The Expendables are a group of righteous, patriotic mercenaries, used by the CIA in operations where the US government does not want to be officially involved. They are led by Barney Ross...

Robin Williams joins Dead Poets’ Society

Thatman Robin joins Dead Poets’ Society Comedy is heart wrenching, and can be fatal. For the comedian, that is. As it was, for Robin, the genius, who ended his 37-year career, and his 63-year life, by apparently killing himself, on 11 August 2014, at his home. What really killed him? Cocaine? Alcohol? Depression? Parkinson's? Maybe a combination of all. But cinema lost one of its most versatile, innovative actors, who was also incomparable in his wit, mimicry and motor-mouth reparte...

The Hundred-Foot Journey, Review: Worth going far to watch

The Hundred-Foot Journey: Worth going far to watch Riots, destruction of  his restaurant, and his wife (Juhi Chawla)’s death push Papa Kadam (Om Puri) and his four children out of India. The family moves to London, eventually settling in a quaint village in France. The village is both picturesque and elegant – the ideal place to settle down and open an Indian restaurant. And so, the Maison (house) Mumbai is born. The cold and stiff chef-proprietress of Le Saule Pleureur, a M...

Guardians of the Galaxy, Review: Gunn's bull's eye!

Guardians of the Galaxy: Gamora, Groot, Rocket, a Great time at the Galaxy and Gunn's bull's eye! Produced by Marvel (Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, The Avengers) and distributed by Disney, Guardians of the Galaxy (GOTG) is the tenth instalment in Marvel’s cinematic forays. It is co-written and directed by James Gunn, and is one of their best ever. Generous doses of humour, CGI used to stunning effect, incredible sets, mesmerising VFX, villainish/grey heroes from three kingdom...

CommunicAsia-BroadcastAsia 2014 was a block-buster, VII

                                                                                                                                             ...

Hercules, Review

Hercules You could add an extra dimension to a demi-god and turn him into a full god. But the power of a God would not find much in common with human film-goers living a mundane existence, who secretly identify with the on-screen exploits of super-MEN. Why not work it the other way around? Why not subtract a dimension? Why not doubt even the demi-god status, and let the audience think that the tale is a myth, and that the real Hercules is just a hard-hitting, large-framed mercenary? They will...

Mumbai Women's International Film Festival, 2014

Women’s Film Festival returns to Mumbai The second edition of the Mumbai Women’s International Film Festival (MWIFF), an 8-day event, organised by Oculus Creations, is slated for 6th to 13th December, 2014, with the goal of showcasing women's talent behind the camera and giving them the spotlight they deserve.  The competitive category includes Short Films, Documentary Films, and Feature Films; the non- competitive category includes World Cine-busters, Wor...

Lucy, Review

Lucy From La Femme Nikita and The Professional to The Fifth Element, writer/director Luc Besson has created some of the toughest, most memorable female action heroes in cinematic history. Meet the latest: Lucy (Scarlett Johansson). Lucy is attractive, not tall, not muscular, with a cutish face, vulnerable, even gullible--An unlikely action hero, an unlikely drug-racket battling, science’s accidental guinea pig who is about to prove unwittingly the theory of an eminent scientist concerni...

The Grand Budapest Hotel, Review

The Grand Budapest Hotel Wes Anderson’s 8th feature film is inspired by the writings of Austrian writer Stefan Zweig (he admits to having “directly stolen” many ideas from Zweig’s works, as well as from his life). He pays tribute to Zweig in the credits, though he then takes co-credit for the film script. In terms of detail, scenic splendour, costumes, make-up and free-wheeling narrative, The Grand Budapest Hotel is an exciting experience. As a comedy, it falls short o...

James Garner: Life, films, TV, quotes

James Garner: Rockford, the Maverick James Scott Bumgarner, born on 07 April 1928 in Oklahoma, known to millions of film-buffs as James Garner, died on 19 July 2014, aged 86. Here’s a tribute to the TV and film-star. It was a tough childhood, by any standards. James’ mother Mildred died when he was four. His father, Weldon (Bill), an alcoholic, remarried. The new mother was abusive. Soon, the Hollywood High School student James was a drop-out. He joined the merchant marines at ag...

CommunicAsia-BroadcastAsia 2014 was a block-buster, VI

CommunicAsia-BroadcastAsia diary, Singapore, June 2014 --A revisit 12 years later, to a block-buster event Sony’s new camcorders and Ericsson’s 4K campaign Sony released two new cameras in the XDCAM series of cameras at Broadcast Asia, Singapore, last month. The PXW-160 and 180 both feature 3 1/3"full HD Exmor CMOS sensors. A 25x zoom (26mm-650mm 35mm equivalent) G lens and a world first electronic variable Neutral Density (ND) are two of the stand out features. Full HD...

User images

About Siraj Syed

Syed Siraj
(Siraj Associates)

Siraj Syed is a film-critic since 1970 and a Former President of the Freelance Film Journalists' Combine of India.

He is the India Correspondent of FilmFestivals.com and a member of FIPRESCI, the international Federation of Film Critics, Munich, Germany

Siraj Syed has contributed over 1,015 articles on cinema, international film festivals, conventions, exhibitions, etc., most recently, at IFFI (Goa), MIFF (Mumbai), MFF/MAMI (Mumbai) and CommunicAsia (Singapore). He often edits film festival daily bulletins.

He is also an actor and a dubbing artiste. Further, he has been teaching media, acting and dubbing at over 30 institutes in India and Singapore, since 1984.


Bandra West, Mumbai

India



View my profile
Send me a message
gersbach.net