Tuesday, February 13, 2007

A Cinematic Life?!

Views of ruined cinema building in Kabul form inside and outside

A cinematic life?!

A memento of producing cinema program for ATN
(By M. Amin Wahidi)

Recently I am working on a screenplay the story of which has come to my mind just by a glance to a broken and ruined movie theatre building in Kabul Afghanistan. It is a memento of when I was producing “Chashme Sheshayee” a cinematic program on Ariana Television Network in Kabul, the time when I wanted to introduce the cinema halls in Kabul and I passed by Fakhri cinema which is totally destroyed in the war. I heard some voices form inside of the cinema hall, I was more curious to see what was inside so I approached the building entrance to see what is going on there. It just shocked me when I saw a family of five was living in the ruined building of a cinema as in their home. A little girl and a little boy were playing on the stage which had no roof on it. The father who had one leg was breaking wood for the fire in the samovar and the mother was washing clothes.
Another boy of them who seemed to be the eldest son of the family works with his father to earn for their livelihood as per saying of the parents.
They make tea at home and sell it to people by serving on a small cart near their home.

I really was confused, to cry or to laugh seeing this situation, but it was not only Fakhri cinema, which is ruined. There are many other movie theatres such as, Barekoot cinema, Kabul Nandari cinema, Maiwand cinema and Kote Sangi cinema which are all broken down due to the civil war and other crises, which one I should cry for?

Seeing all these I went to depth of my thoughts, why was this family forced to live in this building? When this building is going to be reconstructed? What will happen to this family if the building is to be reconstructed? And worse than that what will happen to the culture of cinema in Afghanistan if this ruined cinema hall and other similar ones will not be reconstructed soon? They are the nerve racking questions that jingled in my mind.
But finally I came to a point and that is rather than thinking a lot about it, I should name it (A cinematic Life!) and should write a nice screenplay on it.

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