As the harvest arrives in rural India, it also heralds the season of cinema. The fields lie bare, and the villagers gather breathlessly, anticipating the lorries plying dirt roads that have brought them the magic of the movies in the wondrous darkness of a cinema tent for seven decades.
Riding one such lorry, with a cinema projector and film reels in its belly is a benevolent showman. His village embraced his touring cinema for 40 years but is now tuning into television, leaving him to make a crucial decision about the fate of his peeling lorry. Many villages away, a shrewd showman is striving to become the best in the business. But a green behemoth slows him down — his crumbling cinema projector. Away from the bustle, a wise 70-year-old projector mechanic toils away to singlehandedly repair all the cinema projectors of foreign make that wound up in rural India.
Today, even as they are burdened by the march of time and technology, can the three keepers keep the last touring cinemas of the world running?
*Directors Shirley Abraham and Amit Madheshiya will attend the Festival in Auckland. A Q&A will follow the screenings.
- NZ Premiere