Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyon Aata Hai (1980)
Director: Saeed Akhtar Mirza; Writer: Hriday Lani, Saeed Akhtar Mirza, Kundan Shah; Producer: Saeed Akhtar Mirza; Cinematographer: Virendra Saini; Editor: Renu Saluja; Cast: Naseeruddin Shah, Shabana Azmi, Smita Patil, Dilip Dhawan, Om Puri, Sulabha Deshpande, Arvind Deshpande, Naresh Suri, Nitin Sethi, Aziz Mirza, Roshan Tanuja, Satish Shah, Muhafiz Haider, Avtar Gill, Babu Kumar, Tika Singh, Rohini Hattangadi, Raman Kumar, Madan Jain, Mushtaq Khan, Jaidev Hattangadi, Achyut Potdar, Utpal Dutt, Anjali Paigankar
Duration: 01:49:36; Aspect Ratio: 1.333:1; Hue: 17.177; Saturation: 0.100; Lightness: 0.256; Volume: 0.180; Cuts per Minute: 5.301; Words per Minute: 46.137
Mirza later acknowledged that the film, which addresses India’s minorities, is set in a catholic Bombay milieu because at the time he lacked the courage to deal with Muslim issues (this he did later in his Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro, 1989). Albert Pinto (Shah) is a garage mechanic from Goa who dreams of owning the expensive cars he drives for clients. His girlfriend Stella (Azmi) upsets him with her casual and pragmatic attitude to his colleagues as well as to their employer’s sexual interest in her. Albert’s father (Deshpande) joins a textile workers’ strike and stimulates his son’s political awareness. Mirza wanted the film to be acceptable to the mainstream Hindi cinema and to that end included some songs e.g. the scene of the garage workers praising an expensive car, Paanch lakh ki gaadi hai
(‘The car costs 500,000 rupees’), shot in a single take. Several characteristic Mirza sequences are introduced into the film, such as the hero examining himself in a mirror, or the workers being searched as they leave the factory (shot with a concealed camera).
Albert visits Stella's office to pick her up for a date. Interaction with the flirtatious Hindu boss, Arvind. Albert berates Stella for her provocative clothes and behavior. Stella terminates the date.
Albert Pinto discusses the Christian working girl at a tense lunch party
Footage from a CITU (Kamala Mills) Strike. Striking faces.
Nearly 250,000 workers of 65 textile mills went on strike in Mumbai.
Saeed films a rally organised by CITU, in 1979. The voice-over says the workers of Kamala Mills are going to strike. The workers cheer and run amok.
Shots of subdued chimneys, housing chawls in the foreground, and the city-at-large in the south.
A still chimney.
A silent loom, with cotton dust.
A worker looks at us, a closed iron gate behind him, cotton in his sinews.
Another stares defiantly.
A portrait gallery of workers and their families.
What makes them angry?
Panch Lakh Ki Gaadi: Lyrics by Madhosh Bilgrami. Shot in a single take.
Millworkers on strike, (originally) from Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Kolhapur, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Goa and Maharashtra.
The didactics that make Albert (Shah) - and us angry.
In last scenes of the film Albert goes to meet the striking workers outside the factory where his father works. (they are shown to us as migrant workers from every part of India). He and Stella (Azmi) then attend a "screening" where the chairperson of the Bombay Mill-owners Association (with the Manhattan skyline as his backdrop) in an interview addresses the audience; speaks of the losses incurred on the nation on the 25th day of this total strike (65 mills). Albert shouts back at the screen and the audience. The strike continues. A nighttime morcha with mashaals
(torches), rife with symbolism. End of film.
Albert and Stella watch a newsreel with pro-millowner propaganda. Albert talks back to the film, directly confronting the speaker on screen and is finally forced to leave the theatre by other viewers.