I always forget about this site, but I suppose that doesn’t really matter. I mean, they aren’t looking to get famous or reach people, they just want to archive the best possible digital versions of Indian films in order to preserve them. Anyway, I just put up a very angry and depressed post yesterday (well, angry and depressed for me, which is super cheerful and polite for most people), and then I remembered this site and felt better, so I want to make y’all feel better too!
This group is doing exactly what you would want a group to do, preserve and digitize images of India’s past. Here’s the statement of purpose from the parent group, “Pad.Ma”:
Indiancine.ma has a plain gray interface, no frills and no bells and whistles. But it is searchable by language, director, etc. The video player is a little complex, but for a reason, it is the kind of player a professional editor might use and provides the highest possible grade of image. And of course, they do not have an “app” or access on your smart TV or anything like that. This is for serious film people to use on their computers as they focus and analyze a film, if you want to show it on a bigger screen, use an HDMi1 cord.
They are also strictly legal. You can see listed many films, like Sholay for instance, but when you click on them you get a warning that copyright has not yet expired. The point isn’t for us to be able to watch it now, but to know that there is a full accurate version stored and saved for reference for future scholars.
Good news is, copyrights expire every year and we are into the late 50s now. Do you want to watch a full subtitled version of Kaagaz Ke Phool with high quality images? How about Rajakumari, MGR’s break through first Tamil hit?
Or have you always wanted to watch a Fearless Nadia Wadia movie? All there, Hunterwali through Baghdad Ka Jadu.
I’m not going to recommend this site if you are just getting into Indian films, but if you are looking for an obscure classic, or care enough to want to track down the full real version of something, this is the site.
Or if, like me, you lay awake nights worrying that Indian film history is disappearing into nothing and no one is trying to stop it, you can stop doing that! This lovely group IS trying to stop it, and has lots of funding and has been around for a while and looks to be staying for a longer while.