One of the longest films (shown as a miniseries on television) on Partition, is Tamas. Based on a novel by Bhisham Sahni, Balraj Sahni's brother, the film is, as Rashmi Doraiswamy calls it, 'a call to remember'.
It was controversial from the start with its stark and brutal images of Partition. The film gives a "panoramic view of the violence and hatred of inflamed communal passions of the time."
Making a departure from the episodic nature of the novel, the story is set as seen through the eyes of Nathu and his wife, essayed by Deepa Sahi and director Govind Nihalani's regular actor, Om Puri, as the two try to understand the communal tensions that threaten their simple lives.
Partition (1987): Ken McMullen based his film Partition on one of the most scathing satirical work on the Partition, the short story Toba Tek Singh by Sadat Hasan Manto.
The film is the story of a group of lunatics in a Pakistani asylum who in their own innocent way find this entire concept of Partition of a country absurd. Shot carefully with minimalist sets, the film often fluctuates between colour and black and white images and makes an allegory with scenes of riots outside the asylum, that the mental asylum is the only 'asylum' from the murderous madness seizing both the countries.
There are rumours of a Bollywood film being made on the same short story.
Image: The 1987 British film Partition based on Toba Tek Singh