Supermen of Malegaon
"From the makers of nothing... here comes something." On Channel 4 tonight at 1:30am. Watch it.
In the impoverished Indian town of Malegaon, there is nothing to do for entertainment… except go to the movies. And Malegaon loves the movies.
A number of years ago, one movie lover and video parlour owner, Sheikh Nasir, decided to make his own film. It was recorded on video, edited VCR to VCR, by someone who had learnt filmmaking only by watching films themselves and seeing the behind-the-scenes outtakes on the credits of Jackie Chan movies. He didn’t even realise a film crew consisted of more than one person. Yet Malegaon ke Sholay was a local hit, and so Nasir decided to produce more. They’re something of craze, so much so the people have a nickname for it: Mollywood.
Supermen of Malegaon is the making-of story of Nasir’s most ambitious production to date. This documentary follows the trials and tribulations of Nasir and his band of hobby filmmakers through their film’s writing, planning, and its sometimes troubled shoot, until it’s completed. In the process, we meet some genuine characters, learn something of the unique lifestyle of Malegaon itself, and maybe even learn something about ourselves too.
It’s an incredible, one-of-a-kind film; more powerful and life-affirming than it perhaps has any right to be. But then the filmmakers of Malegaon don’t really care about such things. They make movies because they want to, whether they ‘should’ or not; they make them better than you might expect; and it enriches their lives. Their story may do the same for you. In my opinion, it’s an essential film; a true must-see.