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Anand Patwardhan

Anand Patwardhan

Discover the complete filmography of Anand Patwardhan, for almost 50 years India’s most important – and to some, controversial – documentary filmmaker.

From his first film Waves of Revolution made in 1974 through his most recent film Reason completed in 2018, Patwardhan has recorded the modern history of India and illuminated inconvenient truths of its society, from the injustices of poverty and the caste system, to the rise of militarism, Hindu fundamentalism and an extremist, repressive government.

Virtually all of Patwardhan’s films have faced state censorship and he has had to wage unrelenting legal battles to make them available for screening in India, at all.

And though feted by awards and retrospectives internationally, at the Tate Modern in London or the International Documentary Film Festival in Amsterdam, for example, his work is too little known here in the United States.

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Anand Patwardhan
  • Reason (Part 1)

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 2018 • 95 minutes

    Those who witnessed the scientific spirit fostered by the Enlightenment would scarcely believe that over 400 years later, Faith would still have an upper hand over Reason. Today as technologically advanced nations still debate the me...

  • Reason (Part 2)

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 2018 • 123 minutes

    Those who witnessed the scientific spirit fostered by the Enlightenment would scarcely believe that over 400 years later, Faith would still have an upper hand over Reason. Today as technologically advanced nations still debate the m...

  • Jai Bhim Comrade

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 2012 • 168 minutes

    For thousands of years India’s Dalits were abhorred as “untouchables,” denied education and treated as bonded labour. By 1923 Bhimrao Ambedkar broke the taboo, won doctorates abroad and fought for the emancipation of his people. He ...

  • War and Peace

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 2002 • 135 minutes

    Filmed over four tumultuous years in India, Pakistan, Japan and the USA following nuclear tests in the Indian sub-continent, War and Peace is a documentary journey of peace activism in the face of global militarism and war. The film...

  • Father, Son and Holy War: Trial by Fire

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1995 • 120 minutes

    In a politically polarized world, universal ideals are rare. In India, as elsewhere, the vacuum is filled by religious zeal. Minorities are made scapegoats of every calamity as nations subdivide into religious and ethnic zones, each...

  • Father, Son and Holy War: Hero Pharmacy

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1995 • 121 minutes

    In a politically polarized world, universal ideals are rare. In India, as elsewhere, the vacuum is filled by religious zeal. Minorities are made scapegoats of every calamity as nations subdivide into religious and ethnic zones, each...

  • In the Name of God

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1992 • 75 minutes

    Since gaining independence in 1947, India has been a secular state. But now, as religious fundamentalism grips much of India’s population, the greatest danger to the nation’s extremely strained social fabric may come not from Sikh or...

  • Bombay Our City

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1985 • 75 minutes

    BOMBAY OUR CITY tells the story of the daily battle for survival of the 4 million slum dwellers of Bombay who make up half the city’s population. Although they are Bombay’s workforce – industrial laborers, construction workers, domes...

  • Fishing: In the Sea of Greed

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1998 • 42 minutes

    Traditional fishing communities around the world are under threat of mass displacement by the industrial fishing practices of gigantic factory ships. Private capital, with the aid of international lending agencies, have embarked on a...

  • A Narmada Diary

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan, Simantini Dhuru • Documentary • 1995 • 57 minutes

    The Sardar Sarover Dam in western India, lynch-pin of a mammoth development project on the river Narmada’s banks, has been criticized as uneconomical and unjust. It will benefit urban India at a cost borne by the rur...

  • In Memory of Friends

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1990 • 60 minutes

    IN MEMORY OF FRIENDS documents the violence and terror in Punjab, India – a land torn apart by religious fundamentalists and a repressive government. After examining the political turmoil of the late 1970′s and the rise of Sikh funda...

  • A Time to Rise

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1981 • 40 minutes

    On April 6, 1980, the Canadian Farmworkers Union came into existence. This film documents the conditions among Chinese and East Indian immigrant workers in British Columbia that provoked the formation of the union, and the response o...

  • Prisoners of Conscience

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1978 • 45 minutes

    An important historical record of a traumatic period in India’s recent political history, PRISONERS OF CONSCIENCE focuses on the State of Emergency imposed by Indira Gandhi from June 1975 to March 1977. During the Emergency the media...

  • Children of Mandala

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 2009 • 5 minutes

    A message from the economically displaced children of a slum colony in Mumbai who are educating themselves in the face of government apathy.

  • Images You Didn't See

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 2006 • 5 minutes

    Global censorship of the war on Iraq has stifled the outrage that may have otherwise curtailed the ongoing atrocity of occupation. Not only have the real causes of war been hidden but also its effects. Most people see a sanitized and ...

  • Ribbons for Peace

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • With Naseeruddin Shah, Aamir Khan, Kittu Gidwani, Chandrachur • 1998 • 5 minutes

    Made in the aftermath of Indian and Pakistani nuclear tests, Ribbons gives new meaning to an old film song by Kishore Kumar – a kind of “Imagine” composed before the days...

  • Occupation Mill Worker

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1996 • 22 minutes

    Textile mills were once the backbone of Bombay’s economy and provided the city its working class culture. Today, foreign investment and rising real-estate prices have made selling mill lands more profitable than running mills. Mill ‘...

  • Waves of Revolution

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 1974 • 30 minutes

    Waves of Revolution made during the repressive days of the Emergency in India documents the 1974-75 uprising of the people of Bihar in Eastern India. By 1974 India with its few rich and many poor had become a seething mass of discont...

  • We are Not Your Monkeys

    Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • With Sambhaji Bhagat • 1996 • 5 minutes

    We Are Not Your Monkeys is a music video that reworks the epic Ramayana story to critique the caste and gender oppression implicit in it. Sung by Sambhaji Bhagat and composed by Sambhaji, the late Daya Pawar and...