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International Competition 2017
Pushkar Myths Kamal Swaroop

Every year the Hindu shrine of Pushkar becomes the site of a sprawling cattle and fun fair. This journey on film takes us along the colourful magic of music and dance into the world of Indian myths and gods.

Pushkar Myths

Documentary Film
104 minutes

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Vijay Pratap Singh
Kamal Swaroop
Ashok Meena, Kumar Avyaya
Shweta Rai
Radhamohini Prasad, Hansa Thapliyal
Kamal Swaroop
Kanishk Bhoklay, Manish Pal Singh, Gautam Nair
“All year one sensed a hidden tension, all year something was going on in preparation for those days, as if the ultimate purpose of the year was to home in on those three days.” (Roberto Calasso, “Ka: Stories of the Mind and Gods of India”)

Pushkar is a small town in the Federal State of Rajasthan in northwest India and one of the holiest places of Hinduism. Once a year, however, during the full moon in the autumn month of Kartik, the town and the desert surrounding it turn into a sprawling fun fair with Ferris wheels and carousels, music from folklore to rock and colourful dance performances. Thousands of people, Hindus and Muslims alike, pour in from villages in the whole region to trade camels, horses and cattle. The spectacle appears in the desert as suddenly as a Fata Morgana. And just as suddenly the colourful magic is over. Director Kamal Swaroop – who shot one of the (post-)modern classics of Indian cinema with “Om Dar-B-Dar” in 1988 – captures the exuberant goings-on with a precise eye for strong images and details, exploring the myths and gods of India as well as their political instrumentalisation.

Frederik Lang