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Reason
(Vivek)

Directed by Anand Patwardhan.
India, 2019, DCP, color, 218 min.
Hindi with English subtitles.
DCP source: Filmmaker

In Reason, Anand Patwardhan tackles religious fundamentalism in India head-on by telling the stories of intellectuals who lost their lives speaking out against superstition. Expansive in depth and rigor, Reason can be considered a copia of audio-visual sources on religious violence and misinformation in the 21st century. It contains valuable found footage from TV and fundamentalist groups’ informational DVDs, as well as recordings of live performances, speeches, street interviews and scenes from the daily life of worshippers. In order to capture these images, the filmmaker had to put himself on the line: in one scene, Anand Patwardhan is openly threatened by Sanatan Sanstha representatives at a press conference for protesting the killing of M.M. Kalburgi, a prominent Indian scholar with influence on public policy who was murdered for his stance against superstition. An ambitious and sprawling work, the film was never officially released in India due to censorship, despite winning accolades both at home and abroad.

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