"When we made the film, I was reminded of [Fritz] Lang’s Metropolis - you have this hazy kind of sense of floating through the city as well as the urban sprawl on the ground. We wanted to look at different scales of the city, the aerial and the micro," says architect Rajeev Thakker.
Thakker is part of the five-member team that has made Reading Architecture Practice Mumbai, a 37-minute-long documentary that will have its premiere screening in the city on July 13. The visual beauty of the film is the backdrop to the more serious questions regarding the practice of architecture in Mumbai that the team, comprising Thakker, Samarth Das, Shreyank Khemalapure, Sunil Thakkar and Philippe Calia wish to explore. ... The film showcases five perspectives from leading Mumbai-based architects along the lines of research, design, conservation, activism and pedagogy. There is PK Das, for instance, who speaks of a citizen’s movement to restore the promenades around waterfront spaces such as Bandra Bandstand. Then there is Vikas Dilawari, talking about architectural conservation and the need for understanding the social impact of architecture. All these are set against sweeping aerial shots of waterfronts and shantytowns by New York-based creative studio, Sensorium Works’ that show the metropolis in a rare calm.