The night has acquired in Delhi a radical, almost profound notoriety over the previous few years. Akin to its spiritual cousins from across the world - Dhaka, Cairo, Lahore, Sarajevo, Tehran; ancient cities in modern husks - the night in Delhi constitutes an unique paradox.
The various residents of the city - its chief witnesses and the purveyors of its spirit - render themselves invisible, and yet, it is during the night when the city in itself becomes the most visible, in that, its truest, most primal self begins to emerge from behind the mask it adorns the rest of the day.
The event of the midnight movie exhibition constituted historically a reversal. It was instituted originally as a mode of dispersal for the chaff. A series of titles that represented a sensibility not permissible in civilised, educated Middle America needed outlets where they could play, so to say, without supervision. As such, and as in the case with various decisions taken in contemporary America, a special concession was made: moral scarcity could be accommodated, but only through an allotment, a categorisation. The films could play, but in the dark of the night.
Already present in this modus operandi is a strain of politics - this is true, after all, of all mechanisms that employ a quota - in this case, a temporal one, a 'slot' for the notorious title. The atmosphere in 1960s America, however, distilled this strain into a more potent, pointed version: the midnight movie came to consciously symbolise a counter-cultural sentiment. The youth of the day would use their attendance at such an event to emphasise a difference: of taste, of moral attitudes and from the daily clock set in motion by the industrial society. The midnight movie exhibition was no longer a mere film screening - it constituted infact the very reversal of a day, as one understood it.
With Radium Cinema, Lightcube will engage with this legacy. It will contemplate the paradox of the night in Delhi: invisible people, and visible city - and attempt, in its capacity, to achieve a reverse. The cult horror films that will be screened at this series of films will exist to harness the city's sinister, nocturnal energy into an incredible, invisible force, while also providing for an outlet for the wanderers, those lost in the nighttime to gather, to become visible again - and if possible, to reclaim the streets.