The golden era of cinema

Published:  12:50 AM, 13 November 2017

Stop Genocide: An epic film on 1971 Bangladesh

Stop Genocide: An epic film on 1971 Bangladesh

Since the 1930s, commercial motif emerged. Documentaries started to be produced in undivided Bengal from the first decade of the twentieth century; and most of them were produced by Hiralal Sen. However, during the liberation war of 1971, a number of important documentaries were produced and one of the most important documentaries was Zahir Raihan's Stop Genocide.

Stop Genocide documented the killings and atrocities carried out by the Pakistan Army on the people of East Pakistan. The 20-minute film also depicts the plight of the refugees and the activities of the Government in exile. Raihan made his debut in making of documentary films by Stop Genocide.

Raihan started planning for this documentary around April-May in 1971 and soon started making it. Film Director Alamgir Kabir helped him. It was June and the film was produced in less than a month.

Similarity of this documentary with some of those by Cuban filmmaker Santiago Álvarez indicates Álvarez's influence over Zahir Raihan. Raihan adopted a new technique of film-making of using found video clips and photographs while he was working for this documentary.

The film was created using whatever it was found in the newsreel clips and footage. Raihan made this documentary with an aim to create world opinion against the brutal acts committed by Pakistan Army.  Raihan was a Refugee staying in Kolkata when he made this film.


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