Director Ritesh Batra of The Lunchbox fame is back with a new film The Sense of an Ending. The film is based on Julian Barnes’s novel by the same name that won the Man Booker prize in 2011. The compact novel as the New York Times Book Review put it is ” a mystery of memory and missed opportunity.”

The film stars Jim BroadbentCharlotte RamplingMichelle Dockery and others.

You can catch The Sense of Ending at this year’s Cinequest Film & VR Festival on March 12, 2017. Check Cinequest’s website for ticket and information about the film.


I  sat down to speak with Halfdan Hussey, CEO and co-founder of Cinequest Inc, a Silicon Valley-based organization. Every year they host an annual film festival that features films, workshops, conversation and spotlights the latest technology for content creators and filmmakers. They also have a program for youths called Picture The Possibilities.

Hussey talks about the philosophy behind their Picture The Possibilities initiatives and what is new in this year’s film festival. Hussey is a film maker and an author and he shares how his interest in films developed and what propelled him to write.

The opening night film on Feb 28, 2017 is director Mark Pellington’s The Last Word starring Shirley MacLaine & Amanda Seyfried. The closing night film is director Niki Caro’s The Zookeeper’s Wife, starring Jessica Chastain, Johan Heldenbergh & others. Jane Lynch and Jason Reitman will be at Cinequest to receive their Maverick Award.

Cinequest Film and VR Festival takes place in San Jose and Redwood City from Feb 28 to March 2017. For tickets and program schedule visit Cinequest’s website.

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Nila trailer from Selvamani Selvaraj on Vimeo.

Nila (Moon) from first time director/screenwriter Selvamani Selvaraj will premiere at Silicon Valley’s Cinequest Film Festival this year. The film is part Spotlight section of the film festival that you can watch on Friday, March 4, 2016 at California Theatre in San Jose.

Nila is an independent Tamil film from India. Over the past few years there has been a slow and steady stream of independent films from India and Nila is part of that movement. And like many independent productions this film is partly crowd-funded. Quite a few of these new independent filmmakers from India are trained engineers or techies, who gave up their safe and secure jobs to pursue their creative dreams. Director Selvaraj is one of them.

Nila centers around Vimal, a taxi driver and his chance meeting one rainy night with a childhood flame of his. The film explores unrequited love between these two childhood friends. Nila is based on director Selvaraj’s own experience on love and anguish. The film stars Sruthi Hariharan and Vicky R.

If you miss the premiere, you can catch the film either on March 6, 2016 at Hammer Theatre or on March 7, 2015 at Camera 12 in San Jose. Here is the link about the Nila’s screening at Cinequest.

This year’s Cinequest Film Festival runs from March 1-13, 2016 in various locations in San Jose.


Flight 93, 9/11 and Mark Bingham with Alice Hoagland


Flight 93 took from Newark, NJ to San Francisco, CA on September 11, 2001. The flight never reached its destination. This was one of the 4 planes attacked by hijackers. Flight 93 was believed to be heading towards Capitol Hill in Washington DC, and some passengers onboard the plane foiled that attempt.The flight ended up crashing in a field in Stonycreek Township in Pennsylvania.

Mark Bingham, a San Francisco bay area native was one of the passengers that fought with hijackers as his mother Alice Hoagland points out. Hoagland describes how she along with other surviving family members of flight 93 listened to the tapes and heard the fight her son and others put up.

Hoagland, a bay area native, was a flight attendant with over 20 years experience and had worked for United Airlines. Bingham was flying on a family pass from Newark to San Francisco and almost missed the flight. When the plane was under attack, Bingham called his mother to let her know they were under attack and that he loved her. That was the last time Hoagland heard from her son.

Since the loss of her son Hoagland has been busy working on things that matter to her: Mark Bingham Foundation, LGBT community and airline safety. She is also involved in promoting gay soccer games around the world.

A new documentary film  “The Rugby Player,” reconstructs Bingham’s life through old photos, video clips and interviews with his mother and friends. Bingham was a gay man, who also helped found San Francisco’s first gay soccer club. He grew up in Los Gatos, and played soccer at his high school and was part of the soccer team at University of California Berkeley.

In May 2014 a new 9/11 museum opened in New York city and there are recordings and pictures of Bingham along with others who lost their life on that tragic September morning in 2001.

This interview was originally recorded for TV and aired in SF bay area.