Autobiography of a Princess
Ajay Gehlawat is a professor of theater and film at Sonoma State University and author of several studies on Indian cinema, including Twenty-First Century Bollywood. He will join James Ivory in conversation following the screening.
Madhur Jaffrey, James Mason,
Madhur Jaffrey stars as the titular princess, flawlessly inhabiting the role written with her in mind. Living modestly in London, the daughter of a once-powerful maharajah invites her father’s tutor, Cyril Sahib (James Mason), for tea and 16mm movies to celebrate her late father’s birthday and to reminisce about the glorious time of his rule. As the princess projects archival footage and documentary interviews with other former royals, she regales her guest with tales of the maharajah’s many attributes and urges the former tutor to write a book about her father’s legacy, but Cyril Sahib’s polite reticence tells another story altogether.
The Sword and the Flute
James Ivory, United States, 1959
An exquisite ode to art, scholarship, and tolerance expressed through miniature paintings realized in both the Moghul (Muslim) and Rajput (Hindu) styles during the fifteenth-century reign of Emperor Akbar.
The Creation of Woman
Charles Schwep, United States, 1960
Bhaskar Roy Chaudhuri
In Ismail Merchant’s Academy Award–nominated first production, the Hindu god Brahma—magnificently danced by Bhaskar Roy Chaudhuri—creates man and woman, and trouble ensues.