Share Your Thoughts

Indica Pictures is set to launch the 2022 Indic Film Utsav from Nov 10 to Nov 13, 2022 on their secure OTT platform. Movie fans across the world can choose from 55 films in ten different Indian languages.

The Need For Film Festivals

Danji Thotapalli, Chief Curator and Festival Director is quoted on their website as saying, “For those making indie films with an Indic subject and don’t have big budgets or distribution support, film festivals are a critical launchpad. As a 4-day 24/7 global online OTT festival, Indic Film Utsav expands this platform. Last year, we had 43,000 unique views. Punyakoti, our opening night film, saw 10,000 viewing hours.”

“Muthayya.” (Image credit: Danji Thotapalli)

Nikita Hattangady, Head of Programming is quoted on the website as saying, “I feel proud to be part of a festival that brings Indic-themed films to a global audience that can be enjoyed from the comfort of your home.”

“The Invisible Visible.” (Image credit: Danji Thotapalli)

Movies in Sanskrit?

This year’s festival opens and closes with Sanskrit movies. Chemical engineer-turned-religious scholar Dushyanth Sridhar directs the opening film Sakuntalam. Pre-dating the Mahabharata, Sakuntalam is an adaptation of Kalidasa’s Abhijnanasakuntalam. The event closes with another Sanskrit movie, Bhagavadajjukam. The film has an interesting premise: the souls of a Buddhist monk and a courtesan are exchanged due to an error by Yamaduta.

“A Passenger in Love.” (Image credit: Danji Thotapalli)

Taboo Topics

Also featuring in the impressive line-up of feature films is Lailaa Manju, a film dealing with how a family handles the learning of a same-sex relationship of their child.

Korangi Nunchi directed by journalist-turned-filmmaker K. Jayadev boasts of an impressive lineup of technicians and actors – veteran editor Suresh Urs, cinematographer Madhu Ambat and award-winning actor Archana. The movie discusses the challenges of families living in the tribal belt, often an under-represented theme in movies. The Marathi movie Giraki has the interesting premise of a teen paraglider’s journey of survival when stuck in a forest.

The festival also has a track for documentaries that tackle several interesting themes. There is Third that talks about the plight of the third gender, while The Invisible Visible gives voice to the homeless people. The documentary on the doyen of Indian Archaeology B B Lal is a tribute to the great writer and archaeologist, who died recently.

BB Lal. (Image credit: Danji Thotapalli)

Short Films

The festival has a track for “Shorts” featuring numerous short films. Notable among them is Tohfa, a film about a grumpy old man who lives alone in a house. A parcel arrives that alters his perspective towards the world.

The short movie Silver Threads Golden Hands, is a tribute to the craftsmanship of the weavers of Banarasi sarees. There is also Nauha, a bitter sweet movie about a young man who has to care for a dying old man. 

“New Material.” (Image credit: Danji Thotapalli)

The festival has a track for shorts, featuring short films, and another unique track called Women and Children short, that features short movies carrying themes centered either around women or children. Suraj Dalvi directs Sakhaldand, a simple story about the units of measurement that evaluate a woman’s existence. Also in the lineup is Maashi, a story about a 10-year-old, who witnesses the death of his beloved nanny, Maashi, and how everything changes thereafter.

For a complete list of movies being screened, please visit https://indica.pictures/indic-film-utsav-2022-now.

Anuj Chakrapani

Anuj Chakrapani loves music and cinema among all art forms. He believes their beauty lies in their interpretation, and that the parts is more than the sum. Anuj lives in the SF Bay Area and works for a...