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.  

We started in 1995 connecting films to festivals, documenting the world of festivals around the globe.

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, hopefully end of September, you will be able to sign in progressively soon.

User login

|FRENCH VERSION|

RSS Feeds 

Once upon a time hollywood press conf.

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

Boy Erased, Review: Let the gay have their way

Boy Erased, Review: Let the gay have their way Homosexuality is not a state of mind, a disease or a matter of choice. While we are getting increasingly aware of these facts in many parts of the world, there are at least 35 states in the USA where gay conversion centres try to rid the inmates of this ‘abnormality’ through therapy and methods that are both conventional and unconventional. The memoirs of one boy who was sent to such a home form the basis of Boy Erased, directed by ac...

Bergman showcase at IFFI 2018

Bergman showcase at IFFI 2018 2018 marks the centenary of Ingmar Bergman's birth. On this occasion, when the centenary celebrations are in full swing across the globe, IFFI 2018 will be showcasing 7 of the best films from his substantial filmography. These films are Summer With Monika, Wild Strawberries, The Seventh Seal, Persona, Autumn Sonata, Fanny and Alexander, and Saraband. In addition to these seven films, a documentary on Bergman titled Bergman Island, directed by Marie Nyrerod,...

Anna Ferraioli Ravel to be part of International Jury

Anna Ferraioli Ravel to be part of International Jury at the 49th International Film Festival of India (IFFI), to be held in Panaji, Goa, during November 21-28. State focus - Jharkhand Jharkhand is a small state carved out of Bihar. Movies in the Jharkhand Package include Death in the Gunj, Ranchi Diaries and Begum Jaan. Jharkhand Day will be celebrated on 24th November, 2018 as part of the festival. The International Competition jury The International Competition jury comprises John Irv...

Aspern Papers’s world premiere to open 49th IFFI

Aspern Papers’s world premiere to open 49th IFFI The 49th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) will be held in Goa from 20th to 28th November and will showcase 212 films from over 68 countries. ~The festival will open with the World Premiere of The Aspern Papers. The director Julien Landais and , including Jonathan Rhys Meyers (Golden Globe winner), Joely Richardson (Oscar-nominated actress), Morgane Polanski (actress and daughter of Roman Polanski) will be present at the screen...

Thugs of Hindostan, Review: Where are the thugs?

Thugs of Hindostan, Review: Where are the thugs? In the Hindostan of the early 1800s, as in most countries at any time in history, there were thugs. India, as Hindostan came to be called by the British, had an exactly similar term for these gentlemen, only the t in thug was hardened to sound like tug. Our story begins in 1795, when one small kingdom dared to withstand the marauding East India Company forces, led by John Clive. There is one solitary thug in the film, who has an ambivalent att...

The Grinch, Review: You can’t steal Christmas

The Grinch, Review: You can’t steal Christmas An entire film built around Christmas cannot but be happy and heart-tugging, which is what Grinch is. And since it is animated, anything and everything outrageous and impossible can be incorporated, with technical finesse. Obviously, the film will have special appeal to those who believe in Saint Nicholas, aka as Santa Claus. But others too will be won over by the charm and innocence, seasoned with guile and villainy. The Grinch, who lives ...

Jack & Dil, Review: Love my dog? Shadow my wife!

Jack & Dil, Review: Love my dog? Shadow my wife! Set in picturesque Goa, the film seems to an advert for Goa tourism, a certain brand of tea and a particular brand of kettle. A bunch of actors were most likely contracted for a period and taken to the Western Indian beach paradise state, where a cat and mouse game was played out under the garb of making a movie. Reasonably talented actors appear novices as the plot, of a suspicious husband hiring a novice to spy on his wife, unravels at a ...

Ekkees Taarekh Shubh Muhurat, Review: Marry-go-round

Ekkees Taarekh Shubh Muhurat, Review: Marry-go-round Set in the Hindu holy town of Mathura, with only old faithful Sanjay Mishra in the non-star cast, Ekkees Taarekh Shubh Muhurat (21st, an auspicious date) is the sleeper that wakes you up, the mouse that roared. Slice-of-life characters, with only the occasional over the top comedy, keep the film anchored to the ground and the audience entrenched their cushioned seats. Girdhari Lal Sharma (Sanjay Mishra) is a priest-turned-mythology-storyte...

Lupt, Review: Vengeance, the soul purpose

Lupt, Review: Vengeance, the soul purpose A wafer thin story-line might have made it easier for the makers to deliver a supernatural ‘horror’ film, but there is little to take home from Lupt, except some good performances, led by an unlikely Javed Jaaferi, who, against the trend, has been cast as a ruthless business tycoon. The film is a revenge tale, like 99% of all horror films, but chooses to delve into the realm of souls rather than ghosts. But aren’t most ghosts disgrun...

Kaagaz ki kashti, Review: Surfing oceans of melody

Kaagaz ki kashti, Review: Surfing oceans of melody It’s a tough call. What do you call a biopic on the life and times of singer-composer, late Jagjit Singh? Producer-director Brahmanand S. Siingh settles for Kaagaz ki kashti (Paperboat), deriving the title from one of Jagjit’s most popular numbers, a nazm (an Urdu poetry form), and adding a sub-heading, Jagjit Singh Come Alive. Though he sang all kinds of songs in a career spanning five decades, nazm was not what he was known for....

Badhaai Ho, Review: No age to have a baby

Badhaai Ho, Review: No age to have a baby What if you discover that your mother is pregnant when you are 25 and in a steady relationship? Should you be happy? Sad? Feel outraged? Would you become the butt of jokes day in and day out? How would you deal with the development? Such is the off-beat premise of Badhaai Ho (Congratulations). [This review has been delayed for so many days due to serious issues with my computer, but the film, which was seen 10 days ago, deserves to be reviewed, and we...

Kashi—In Search of Ganga, Review: Searchomania and Schizophrenia

Kashi—In Search of Ganga, Review: Searchomania and Schizophrenia Suspense thriller it could be. It is not. Search for a sibling it could be. It is not. A film that takes the audience for a royal ride, it is. A classic case of the script and the direction tying up the story in knots, and then, not knowing how to unravel the Gordian knotty, only getting naughty and clever by half. Lucknow-based journalist Devina meets Kaashi in Kaashi (another name for Varanasi or Banaras) and takes an ...

Gaon--The Village No More, Review: Here yesterday, Gaon today

Gaon--The Village No More, Review: Here yesterday, Gaon today Imagine a village cut-off from the country and the world. Totally, completely, fully, comprehensively cut off. Imagine community farming, imagine a community kitchen. Also imagine guru-shishya parampara (teacher-disciple oral tradition) education, without any tools. And imagine herbal medicine as the only method of disease treatment. Can you imagine this scenario in 2017? No, you can’t. Writer-director Gautam Singh Sigdar can...

Baazaar, Review: Insighter trading

Baazaar, Review: Insighter trading Allahabad (now renamed Prayagraj) boy Rizwan Ahmed idolises stock market wolf Shakun Kothari and aims to become a billionaire tycoon like his hero. Baazaar then moves on to detail how unscrupulous and manipulative, even corrupt, Kothari is, and how all this impacts the small-town boy who has a sister to marry, and to live up to the expectations of an honest father who has just retired. Get ready for an insight into the world of stocks and shares, insider tra...

Hunter Killer, Review: Gerard Butler throws no punches, but there’s plenty of action

Hunter Killer, Review: Gerard Butler throws no punches, but there’s plenty of action Most films about ships and submarines have too much jargon for the viewers to swallow and assimilate, while staying focused on the plot. Though Hunter Killer falls prey to such trappings, it is to its credit that there are some interesting twists in the plot, though they aren’t entirely new to the genre. Sadly, three or four plot points cannot make the narrative sustain the two hours plus length t...

Halloween, Review: Too much slashing, but all pointless

Halloween, Review: Too much slashing, but all pointless Murder can be mysterious and motivated, and the genre is called murder mystery. That is the Agatha Christie kind. Give the audiences a good murder mystery, filled with suspense, anytime. Murders that are gratis, committed serially, without motive, perpetrated by a psychopath killer, have been dealt with in films like Psychopath, The Boston Strangler, No Way to Treat a Lady and the Indian biopic on Raman Raghav, the head-smashing stone-ma...

The Great Indian Dysfunctional Family, Web series by ALT Balaji

The Great Indian Dysfunctional Family, Web series by ALT Balaji After an accident during border duty, in which he suffers a foot injury, General Vikramjeet Ranaut settles down for a quiet and happy life with his wife Geeta, mother Premlata and mute son Mridul in his ancestral home in Coonoor. In his spare time, he trains some military cadets. When his estranged brother Samar and sister-in-law Sonali return after 8 years, things spiral out of control. Samar had fled both the home and the army...

Fryday, Review: Thank Devil, It’s Friday

Fryday, Review: Thank Devil, It’s Friday A water-purifier salesman has until Friday to make his first sale, or else face the sack. A ham actor has only the Friday to make his extra-marital catch, since his wife is away for just about a day. The twain meet at the actor’s home, where the married fan of the hero is about to give in to his seductive moves, and then all hell breaks loose. Umpteen Gujarati and English plays in Mumbai have tried and tested the formula, usually with succ...

Helicopter Eela, Review: No copter, too much of Eela

Helicopter Eela, Review: No copter, too much of Eela An intriguing title, the film has nothing to do with helicopters. It is the story of a domineering and stubborn mother who has a fixation about her only son’s welfare and whereabouts. Trouble is he is twentyish and the last thing he needs or likes is being mothered all the time. Designed to showcase the talent of actress Kajol, and co-produced by hubby, actor Ajay Devgn, Helicopter Eela begins on a bright note and then peters down to ...

Tumbbad, Review: Hastaar the Horrible and the Dough Dolls

Tumbbad, Review: Hastaar the Horrible and the Dough Dolls Tumbbad, named after the location where most of the action takes place, is a historical fantasy horror film, directed by debutant Rahi Anil Barve. Anand Gandhi, the director of Ship of Theseus, served as the creative director, co-writer and executive producer, with Adesh Prasad as co-director and co-writer. Tumbbad is jointly produced by lead actor Sohum Shah and Aanand L. Rai, among others. The film took six years to make and is path ...

At 75, IPTA continues its tradition of rewarding drama talent

At 75, IPTA continues its tradition of rewarding drama talent Three milestones were established this year by the Indian Peoples Theatre Association (IPTA): firstly, it turned 75, secondly, 2018 marks the 100th birth anniversary of one of its pillars, the poet Kaifi Azmi, and thirdly, its annual Inter-College Dramatic Competition (ICDC) entered its 47th year, having begun in 1972. The Competition awards the best of talent in Mumbai colleges, for plays in Hindi/Urdu or the symbiotic language, H...

Venom, Review: High-breed Hannibal lecture

Venom, Review: High-breed Hannibal lecture Alien organisms are brought to earth by a mad industrialist who experiments by hosting them in human bodies, to form hybrid beings. These high-breeds feed on living humans, possess immense strength and can take over the human host at will, both in mind and body. What’s more, they can, and do, talk to the hosts in English, most of the conversations being lectures. Alien organisms inspired by Hannibal Lecter, a Hollywood cannibal who has been eat...

9th Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai: The Post, A Star is Born and Maassab make it worth the wake

9th Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai: The Post, A Star is Born and Maassab make it worth the wake Dainik Jagran, which means ‘daily wake’, is a leading Hindi language newspaper of India and the group also owns the popular tabloid, Mid-Day. Its 9th film festival was held across 18 cities and came to Mumbai on the 27th of September, playing through the 30th. Held at four screens of the suburban multiplex called Cinépolis (formerly Fun Republic), it suffered from many technical an...

Ishqeria, Review: Malaria, loveria and ishqeria—this ease or disease?

Ishqeria, Review: Malaria, loveria and ishqeria—this ease or disease? Some films have pleasing visuals, simple dialogue, nice songs, over the top characters and actors mis-matched to their roles. They seem to be a picnic for the makers, but offer little or no entertainment to the viewer. What is worse is that a film like Ishqeria is inordinately delayed, looking dated and jaded on release. Ishqeria is directed by Prerna Wadhawan and written by her, along with Radhika Anand. Perhaps the...

The Equalizer 2, Review: Unequal combat

The Equalizer 2, Review: Unequal combat When you have one man battling four or more mercenaries, the combat is apparently unequal. Turns out that the inequality is in favour of the one man, since he is played by Denzel Washington, the protagonist, who does the requisite equalising. Washington is not the quintessential action hero, though he tries hard to be one. Passable stuff that keeps you mildly excited with its action, and takes pains to make the story move at a reasonable pace, making th...

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