Saeed Mirza

Born in Bombay, Saeed Mirza worked in the advertising industry before joining FTII, Pune. Saeed Mirza's early films, usually about the working class of Bombay, attempt a free-flowing narrative influenced by Brazilian films. He collaborated with K Hariharan, Mani Kaul and others to form the Yukt Film Co-operative where he made his first feature film, Arvind Desai Ki Ajeeb Dastaan.









Notable Films:

Arvind Desai Ki Ajeeb Dastaan - 1978 - Hindi
(The Strange Fate of Arvind Desai)

The last film produced by the Yukt Co-op, a group started by FTII filmmakers and technicians and the first film by Saeed Mirza. The protagonist, Arvind Desai, the son of a businessman, occasionally dates the company's secretary and discusses politics and art with a Marxist colleague.

This most experimental feature of Saeed Mirza tries to elaborate its own political film language.

Direction & Co-Screenplay: Saeed Mirza
Co-Screenplay: Cyrus Mistry
Cast: Dilip Dhawan, Anjali Paingankar, Shriram Lagoo, Om Puri, Rohini Hattangadi
Cinematographer: Virendra Saini
Music: Bhaskar Chandavarkar



Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyon Aata Hai - 1980 - Hindi
(What Makes Albert Pinto Angry)

Albert Pinto is a garage mechanic from Goa who dreams of owning the expensive cars he repairs for his clients. His girlfriend Stella upsets him with her casual and pragmatic attitude towards his colleagues as well as to their employer's sexual interest in her. When Albert's father joins a textile workers' strike, his political awareness is stimulated.

Direction & Screenplay: Saeed Mirza
Cast: Naseeruddin Shah, Shabana Azmi, Smita Patil
Cinematography: Virendra Saini
Music: Manas Mukherjee



Mohan Joshi Haazir Ho! - 1984 - Hindi
(A Summons for Mohan Joshi)

Saeed Mirza's parody on housing legislation tells of Mohan Joshi, a retired clerk who lives with his wife in old Bombay tenement. Joshi sues his landlord, the evil property developer Kundan Kapadia, which starts a complicated and expensive legal procedure conducted by the slick lawyer Malkani. Eventually Joshi realises that one cannot win against entrenched economic powers.

Direction & Co-Screenplay: Saeed Mirza
Co-Screenplay: Yusuf Mehta
Cast: Bhisham Sahni, Naseeruddin Shah, Deepti Naval, Rohini Hattangadi, Amjad Khan
Cinematographer: Virendra Saini
Music: Vanraj Bhatia



Naseem - 1995 - Hindi

Naseem is set during 1992, just before the Babri Masjid at Ayodhya, was demolished by Hindu fanatics. Naseem, a middle-class Muslim school girl enjoys a warm relationship with her aged & ailing grandfather. While watching the horrific build-up at Ayodhya, the grandfather recalls his memories of pre-Independent Agra. Naseem's brother gets attracted towards Muslim fundamentalist groups, thereby leading the family to more troubles. The grandfather dies on December 6th.

Direction & Screenplay: Saeed Mirza
Cast: Kaifi Azmi, Mayuri Kango, Kulbhushan Kharganda, Surekha Sikri
Cinematography: Virendra Saini
Music: Vanraj Bhatia



Filmography:

  • Arvind Desai Ki Ajeeb Dastaan (1978)
  • Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyon Aata Hai (1980)
  • Mohan Joshi Haazir Ho (1983)
  • Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro (1989)
  • Naseem (1995)



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