Film Festival – New Voices in Cinema

Toto Funds the Arts and Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan present New Voices in Cinema – A day long festival featuring the longlisted films of the TOTO Short Film Award, 2018 and young filmmakers from Germany.

Two of the 18 filmmakers, Shreyas Dashrathe and Priya Naresh will be in conversation with Rashmi Sawhney.

Venue: Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan
Time: 10:30 a.m onwards

Date: APRIL 29th
Entry is open for all.

The events of the day will be as below:

1. Ahmed’s Dream
Director: Mridul Narnaulia
5 min 18 s
Ahmed’s dream is a journey through the old city of Ahmedabad, showing the diverse and complex reality of a part of the city that many choose to ignore. The beauty in the huge mess that it looks like, is the main idea for the film. The space is so jam -packed and chaotic that people often miss the hidden beauty of these situations. The title was inspired by the idea of Ahmed Shah, who founded the Ahmedabad city within its many darwazas- the film roams around the teen darwaza area of the city.

2. Daslakhiya
Director: Rishika Namdev
30 min
Fences are often built to create boundaries, to determine ownership and
to create partitions. One such fence has been built in the Kanha National Park of
India, where a indigenous tribe has been deprived of their basic forest rights.
Daslakhiya is a documentary which reveals the aftermath of the eviction of the Baiga tribe from the forest.

3. Bismaar Ghar (Withering House)
Director: Shreyas Dasharathe (TFA Awardee, Short Film in 2018), present here
25 min 51 s
A house gives us a sense of belonging. It envelopes us and protects us. It is a symbol of the time, the culture, and the beings that inhabit it. A house has a unique identity, like a living, breathing being. Each one different, with its own perks and glitches. With the changing times and circumstances, we move towards a strange kind of uniformity under the shadow of ‘urbanism’ and ‘development’. And it is most visible in our most personal embodiment – our house.

4. Eye Test
Director: Sudha KF
16 min 12 s
Eye Test is a short fiction film that delves into the mindscape of the 27-year old Nivedita, when she visits an eye clinic for a checkup. The eye clinic, which is a drab and clinical space becomes an unlikely and unique sensorial geography for her invoked memories of her mother and her own lonely childhood, also revealing to us her grieving self.
Through these re-visions of hers, the film captures the difficult everyday realities of a
working single mother in India.

TEA BREAK – 12:10 -12:25

5. Ritham
Director: Siva Ranjini
28 min
Every film is an autobiography. Everyone has that one story among many which we keep repeating in our lives in all possible ways that we can. We keep coming back to that same story time and again. Just when we think that we are over it, we find ourselves at it again. “Ritham” was a journey to herself, says the director. A search within for answers that she had been seeking her whole life.

6. Kurli
Director : Natesh Hegde
17 min 23 s
Kurli is a film shot using non-professional actors, and shot virtually on a zero-budget. The film is in black-and white.
Who owns morality and punishment, and indeed who manufactures it?

7. Kaala Bindu
Director: Bhushitendu Bhatt
17 min 09 s
Kaala Bindu follows Bindu, a young mysterious girl, who narrates the story of her life to Vitthal, a boatman, as he rows her across the Ganges on a windy day.
Set in Benares, the film addresses the themes of social stigma, superstition and the power of storytelling.

LUNCH BREAK – 1:35 – 2: 35

8. Barsaati
Director: Priya Naresh (director present)
12 min 45 s
On a cold night, two men encounter their sleepless thoughts. Familiar fears kindle new words on their faces. The film witnesses them talking, between the noise living in buildings, and the silence of the sky.

9. Burlesque
Director: Sagar S
6 min 52 s
From birth to death, Burlesque is an exploration of the different stages of a lived experience. Individuality is lost as one stage melts into another; and individual
experience becomes a scene from an endless montage of existence. The animals
are a metaphor for the inconsequentiality of one’s life in the larger scheme of
things. Each animal plays a role, and experiences an emotion that starkly
contrasts with the next. From the point of creation till the Fall, the playfulness,
the poignancy and the tragedy of life is glimpsed.

10. Jivari
Director: Himanshu Prajapat
23 min 09 s
Jivari, in Indian classical music, refers to the overtone-rich sound characteristic of classical Indian string-instruments such as the tanpura, sitar, surbahar, Rudra veena and Sarasvati veena. Jivari can refer to the acoustic phenomenon itself and to the meticulously-carved bone, ivory or wooden bridges that support the strings on the sounding-board that produce this particular effect. So as the meaning of the title.
The film attempts to trace the bridge between the Craftsman and the Musician by exploring the intimate bond Zakir Bhai and his music shop have with classical music, and how this bond has evolved over the years, interspersed with letters.

11. Wedding Preparations in the Country
Director: Akash Sharma
26 min 49 s
In post-war Bosnia & Herzegovina, an old man, Alija, is a worker in a waste-
paper factory, and leads a solitary life. One day, he remembers that he had to
get married many years ago to a girl named Betty in the countryside, but had
forgotten about it. He now decides to take leave from his work and embark on a journey to the countryside to meet her.

12 Circus
Director: Gautam Arora
23 min 05 s
Circus is a satirical observational comedy loosely based on true events.
Samarth is a 20-something boy from Delhi, working in one of the many IT firms on
OMR in Chennai. Leaving to the airport on an urgent call from his mother, Samarth
has an episode with the pillar of the Indian Constitution, the Police. What follows is a
series of farcical events that leave Samarth questioning not only the Indian
Constitutional system but also the ethical underpinnings of the citizens of India.
Circus is a heartfelt glimpse into the urban life of Chennai, thus being a
synecdoche of everyday India.

TEA BREAK – 4:15-4:30

13. Gi
Director: Kunjila Mascillamani (TFA Awardee, Short Film in 2018)
30 min
Gi’ is about a Malayali woman and her aging grandfather, living in Kolkata.
They are both in their worlds of silence and sadness while being connected with a love
so deep that nobody seems to understand it. The film speaks about abuse and hindutva, pain and people’s bonds. Shot in Kolkata, the film was the diploma project of the director in 2017.

14. Welcome Valentine
Director: Dhruv Satija
16 min 43 s
The film explores the ideas of love, politics and the Hindu religion in contemporary Ahmedabad, Gujarat through a priest who has been marrying off eloping couples in a Hanuman Temple – not just heterosexual couples but also people from the LGBT+ community.
Hirabhai Juguji (the priest) approaches love, marriage, politics and religion with not just extreme simplicity but also extreme depth. His beliefs are very unusual compared to the orthodox and conservative beliefs priests are presumed to have in India, and one is left wondering about one’s own convictions. It is at his temple that the very complex ideas of love, religion and politics criss-cross and contrast and turn into something wonderful.

German Selection:

15. Halfway
Director: Rand Beiruty
4 min
Images and social-media messages are interwoven with animated segments that illustrate the state of Abu Haidar’s family, which is stuck halfway.

16. Good Night, Everybuds!
Director : Benedikt Hummel
5 min 32 s
As the world’s dozing off, two boiling hearts engage on a sexual journey along the moonlit shores. A wild choreography of squeezings and pleasings unfold to eventually have all hearts embracing everlasting coziness.

CONVERSATION: Shreyas and Priya with Rashmi Sawhney – 5:45 – 6:30

Rashmi Sawhney is a Bangalore-based academic and writer whose work deals with cinema and visual culture. Rashmi is currently faculty at the Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology. In her recent work, she has been exploring the science fictional imagination in India (editing Studies in South Asian Film and Media, 6,2 (2015)), Turkey, Japan, Argentina, Chile, and other countries outside the global North. She also headed the India Foundation for the Arts’ Arts Practice and Curatorship programmes for two years, and has been interested in the intersections between popular culture.

Shreyas Dasharathe, the director of Bismaar Ghar explores the possibility of telling stories that are unusual but honest. He is a student of film at the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad. Recently, he was part of the Looking China Youth Film Project, where he was invited to China alongside other international filmmakers to make a documentary on Chinese culture. Shreyas is a TFA Awardee for Short Film in 2018, for his film Bismaar Ghar.The film was also awarded the Best Student Film at the recently concluded Mumbai International Film Festival 2018.

Priya Naresh has received the International Young Filmmaker Award in Germany for her short film Barsaati , which has also been screened at several other festivals. She has worked on a documentary on the death penalty in India, which won the Asian Cinema Fund in 2015 and was funded by the Swiss Embassy. Previously, she worked in a documentary-production house in Delhi, associating with organisations like the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sanghatan, and the UNICEF. She currently pursues her Master’s in Sociology from the Delhi School of Economics.

17. Watu Wote
Director : Katja Benrath (OSCAR NOMINATED)
22 min
For a decade, Kenya has been targeted by the terrorist attacks of the Al-Shabaab. An atmosphere of anxiety and mistrust between Muslims and Christians is growing. In an instance in December 2015, though, Muslim bus passengers showed that solidarity can prevail.

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