Every Thursday in July, At the Crossroads: Critical Film and Video from the Caribbean will present a selection of videos and films that challenge conventional notions of the region through images and stories inspired by the cultural, social, and political complexities of the Caribbean. This evening PAMM will screen Stories from Surinam (2002) by Melvin Moti and BIM (1974) directed by Hugh A. Robertson.
Stories from Surinam (2002)
Melvin Moti (Dutch). Digital color video with sound. 35 min.
This work reflects on the story of 34,000 Indian laborers who, between the years of 1873 and 1916, left India to work on Dutch plantations in Surinam.
BIM (1974) (Trinidad)
Directed by Hugh A. Robertson. 100 min. English (from Trinidad)
BIM is a movie that portrays the complex relationship between blacks, Indians and whites in Trinidad and Tobago prior to the independence movement of 1962. It focuses on the life of Bheem “Bim” Singh, an Indian boy living in Trinidad, who is sent to live with his aunt after his father, a trade union leader for sugar-cane workers, is shot to death during a wedding. At his new school, Bim is isolated and picked on by the black students because of his "coolie" (Indian) heritage. As tension builds during his very first day he stabs one of the students as a means of defense. This incident gets Bim kicked out of school and his aunt's home and he is forced to live a life of violence and crime to survive, but then rises to prominence as a trade union representative for the Indian sugar-cane workers.