Bollywood coming back to Světozor

The 15th annual festival of Bollywood films starts Oct. 19

Evocative song and dance movies with dramatic story lines are coming to Prague's kino Světozor again Oct. 19–22 in the 15th Bollywood Film Festival. Catching the Bollywood spirit has now become an annual tradition, and the festival is becoming more popular each year.

A film partly shot in Prague will be shown at the end of the festival. A Bollywood dance party will take place Oct. 20 at La Loca Music Bar.

The festival presents Indian films to the Czech audience. Watching Bollywood films can be an interactive activity as viewers are encouraged to shout, whistle and dance during the screenings.

Světozor has two screening halls, and that is why the showtimes seem to overlap. The more popular films are in the large hall, while more intimate, experimental or vintage films are in the small hall.

The festival has moved beyond the strict geographic boundaries of Bollywood to show films from other parts of India as well.

The festival will start Oct. 19 at 7 pm with the opening ceremony and the screening of the 2017 historical fantasy Baahubali 2: The Conclusion. The movie is inspired by Indian mythology and provides both breath-taking action and gentle romance.

The next day, Oct. 20, at 6 pm, visitors will have an opportunity to watch the 30-minute experimental movie Camera Threat, which shows the relationship between the Mumbai film industry and the image. The screening is followed by the short poetic documentary film Krida.

The romantic comedy Badrinath Ki Dulhania is at 6:30 pm. The humorous movie criticizes the traditional view of the relationship between men and women. A young liberated woman and a rich young man from a strict family start a relationship and face some complications.

The same day, at 7:30 pm, there will be a screening of the thriller Take Off. A Muslim nurse moves to Iraq for better salary but faces poor security conditions and has to fight for her life. The movie is based on actual events from 2014 and combines domestic drama with politics.

The main day will be Oct. 21 with six movies. The day will start with a 3 pm screening of the 1996 drama Raja Hindustani. The movie is about a couple who deeply love each other but face difficult circumstances.

Then, Hotel Salvation, a comedic drama about life in anticipation of death, will be shown at 3:30 pm. At 6 pm, the festival will present the movie Actor in Law about a young man dreaming about the acting career but mistakenly taken as a lawyer suddenly winning a case.

The six best LGBTQ documentary movies from KASHISH, annual Mumbai queer festival, will screen at 6:15 pm.

The day will continue with the romantic comedy Jab Harry Met Sejal at 8:30 pm, which was partly shot in Prague as well as in Amsterdam, Lisbon, and Budapest. It stars Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma.

The crime drama Vikram Vedha, about the meeting of a policeman with a mafioso, is at 8:45 pm.

The final day's screenings on Oct. 22 will start with the daughter and father relationship movie Piku at 3 pm.

A Death in the Gunj, a disturbing thriller, continues the day at 5:30 pm. Actress Konkona Sen Sharma made her directorial debut. The film stars Vikrant Massey, Om Puri and Kalki Koechlin.

Hindi Medium, a movie about the unusual family, will be shown at 8:30 pm in the large. A successful but socially outcast family pretends to be poor so their daughter can attend a better school.

The small hall at 20:30 will screen the political satire Joker.

All movies will be shown in the original languages with English and Czech subtitles.

The Bollywood Film Festival was launched in 2003 and has developed a large fan base over the years.

The festival was started by three people, a Czech-Nepalese dancer, a Czech filmmaker, and a Chrles University Indology scholar. Thinking that there had been no chance to watch Bollywood movies in Prague, they decided to bring the passionate Indian movies here.

According to Sangita Shresthova, the co-organizer of the festival, apart from having uncomplicated plots, Bollywood movies actually have a depth that is the key to the great success of the festival.

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