'Joseph ki Macha' in International Film Festival

Review from: Hueiyen News Service *

BOBBY WAHENGBAM'S 'Joseph ki Macha" produced by DDK Imphal, after successfully screened at MIFF 2008 and VIBGYOR International Film Festival, the film is appointed to be screened again at the upcoming 6th Kathmandu International Mountain Film Festival to be held from December 11 to 15 at Nepal.

A total of 50 films nominated all over the world will be screened at the Film Festival. The film also received invitation to screen at the 14th Kolkata Film Festival to be held from November 10 to 17 .

A scene from Joseph ki Macha

A scene from 'Joseph ki Macha'

  • Ch Inaobi & W Bomber are the associate Director of the film,
  • Irom Maipak as Cameraman;
  • Tomal & Aboi as Associate Cameraman;
  • Bhuban in Music;
  • R.K Lalmani as Editor and
  • R.K Jnanranjan, Reena, Rajen Meetei are the Artistes of the film.

'Joseph Ki Macha' Joseph's Son revolves around a law-abiding couple, Joseph and Maryu, who suddenly find their son missing one day. Having waited for a day or two, Mary persuades her husband Joseph to visit the morgue at the government hospital to check for unclaimed bodies.

As Joseph drives towards the morgue, he stops by the cremation ground, His intuition guides him inside. He sits down on the field and watches a flock of birds fly past.

Haunted by church bells, Joseph lets out a gut-wretching, full-throated wail. Moments later, he walks past the coffins and disappears from the frame. The emotional intensity that Wahengbam achieves through visual design and sound effect is a lesson in cinematic expression.

There is no dialogue or background narration but the language of images makes the film self-explanatory. A small statue of Jesus Christ that hangs near the rear views mirror of Joseph's car has been used throughout the film as a metaphor as the car ploughs through the chaotic traffic, the unrest of the world around him is mirrored on his face.

He crosses a students' procession the young, vulnerable faces reminding him of his son. The car takes a turn and runs into hundreds of shoes strewn on a deserted street.

Joseph then runs into a wall of security personnel and watches helplessly as injured people are loaded onto trucks and buses. His journey comes full circle at the cremation ground.

Like dialogue, Wahengbam has steered clear of a background score but lets the church bells, honking traffic sounds and silence do the talking. Music wafts onto the screen only in the last shot in the form a prayer.

One of the most acclaimed films in the package of North-Eastern Films at the recently concluded 10th Mumbai International Film Festival, 2008, Joseph's Son is uncannily eloquent in its silence.

And to quote noted French film critic and film festival consultant Barbara Leich: "In some films, silence becomes meaningfully vocal and imaginative use of metaphors becomes sound narrative. Joseph's Son is one of such films" .

* Hueiyen News Service provided this review for this film.
This article was webcasted on October 29, 2008.


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