Students’ Films

PR2010_PosterA Festival of Contemporary Political Films


Organised by
Magic Lantern Foundation & India International Centre

Venue: India International Centre
40 Max Mueller Marg, New Delhi 110003

Student films: National Institute of Design

26 February 2010, Auditorium 1

9:30 to 11:30


Dir: Prachi Mokashi
18 min, 2008, India

An NRI from Leicester, Siddhis from Africa and an old Sindhi woman – they all come from different places and yet they call the same city of Ahmedabad, ‘home’.

Where is home for these people? What does home mean for all of us? Is it the place we come from? Or is it where we reside? Shot on location in Ahmedabad, Saraai shares the stories of its people, reminiscing about their past; trying to understand their present, newly acquired identities.
Saraai literally means, ‘rest-house’, a temporary home for travelers. The film itself is about such travelers. Through their experiences, the film attempts to understand the very idea of home and belonging.

Pollena-KathePollena Kathe

Dir: Udayraj P J
15 min, 2008, India

This film is inspired by Tulu folktales and an attempt to create a folk film. It uses popular motifs, legends and symbols used in the Tulu region.

‘Pollena Kathe’ is the story of Polla, a young man in the village, who believes folktales to be real. Batru, the temple priest and one of Polla’s very few friends, starts believing in Polla’s tales and they embark on a treasure hunt, which turns out to be a wild goose chase. The next day, Batru asks Polla to narrate his own story. Polla narrates the story of the simpleton to Batru and what follows next reinforces Batru’s belief in Polla.

bride-wantedBride Wanted

Dir: Sarah Da’Costa
16 min, 2008, India

The multi-coloured Sunday matrimonial pages you line your kitchen shelf with are the backbone of Bride Wanted, a light hearted look at the serious issue of arranged marriage. Retro Bollywood music, smiling but indecisive twenty-somethings and gyan-dispensing bureau consultants all play their part to demystify the arranged marriage.


Dir: Prahlad Gopakumar
11 min, 2008, India

A film about two couples – one young and the other old – in conversation with each other, revealing their insecurities and their relationship. Coffee (kapi) is the topic of discussion connecting them. The idea behind the film was also to create a feeling of strangeness in their relationships and make the viewer reflect back on their own. Relationships are the same everywhere. Everyone talks, fights and gets back. It’s become a routine in the human circle.

tran-eka-tranTran eka tran

Three Ones A Three

Dir: Aastha Gohil
19 min, 2008, India

‘Tran eka tran’ is a documentary film about a teacher, a nurse and a young girl. The film shows each one of them pursuing their personal dreams and ambitions, and is about how their lives and dreams cross each other’s.


Dir: Ujjwal Utkarsh
21 min, 2008, India

Pramesh is looking for an exit from his regular day-to-day routine life. He is suddenly granted that exit but with a situation where he is to make someone else’s life/death decision.


Dir: Ahsam K R
10 min, 2008, India

This film deals with the lives of the Baangi-Saabs (Muezzins) and the duality of their life – their actions being important but themselves being unimportant and of following a faith and doing a job. Despite being heard all the time, they are almost invisible. It is an irony that these people, who give out the Call of God (Azaan), live in the worst of conditions.

purna-viramaPurna Virama

Dir: Ujjwal Utkarsh
12 min, 2008, India

We observe a cold blooded systematic, rhythmic breaking down of a “bus”.


11:45 to 13:35

whats-the-point-of-storiesWhat is the point of stories if they aren’t even true?

Dir: Aditi Bannerjee
12 min, 2008, India

This short film started out as a search to try and place myself as a storyteller in the digital age and it further led to seeking the larger history of storytelling itself.

Set in Ahmedabad, this twelve-minute documentary offers a glimpse into the poignant, funny and forgotten history of storytelling through the eyes of the endearing eighty year old storyteller – Kavi Dada. This film takes a look at the purpose of storytelling – in the past and the current context and in doing so it addresses the larger purpose of life and art.

Nodir-GaanNodir Gan

Dir: Prachi Mokashi
23 min, 2009, India

The Brahmaputra river in Assam is home to many people who hail from different parts of India. From the hardworking fisherman who ventures out each day to feed his family, to the mother who sings to her newborn as she weaves vibrant patterns on a wooden loom; every community that shapes its life around the river has a story to tell.

It is these stories that the film “Nodir Gaan” narrates; stories of anonymous but heroic negotiations with the many moods of the river, which communities situated near and around Guwahati make, as part of their everyday lives.



Dir: Ahsam K R
16 min, 2009, India

A film that celebrates childhood through a day in Geetu’s life. Shot in lush green Kerala, this film also celebrates the rain. Geetu, a sober and relatively quiet girl, who is quite particular about her appearance and punctuality, slowly breaks all rules just to fulfill her small desires. The drizzle resembles the spontaneity of a child.


Dir: Shraddha Sakhalkar
12 min, 2009, India

Overtly, ‘Sarkhej’ speaks about the life of a Sufi saint and the wonders of his mausoleum, which lies 8 kilometers from the city of Ahmedabad in Gujarat, India. It has many layers of emotion in the guise of a collective memory of people that visit the place regularly. It is a rich and often contradictory record of the oral history of this group of protected historical monuments.


Dir: Siddharth Gautam Singh
16 min, 2009, India

The film revolves around the themes of memories, remembering, forgetting and storytelling. The film uses pickle making as a metaphor for memory keeping. The pickling of fruits and vegetables becomes analogical to the way we preserve memories. Like the pickle changes its flavor with time, our memories keep changing their flavor too, every time we remember them.


Dir: Manish Saini
19 min, 2009, India

Gullak tells the tale of little Dipu and Chini’s struggle to pay off their debt to the local bully. Times are tough but Chini finds a piggy bank to help them save money. With their grandfather’s help, the children begin collecting cash in the hope of escaping Gagan, their tormentor. But will the “Gullak” help them or will it eat up all their savings?


Dir: Prem Gunjan
12 min, 2009, India

This film is about desires. Everyone has their own and somehow, everyone is connected through them. The main protagonist of the film is a hawker, who sells balloons to support himself as well as his uncle. He also helps a woman who is ill and was a prostitute earlier. Despite repeated warnings by his uncle, he continues to help her. The film revolves around these three characters, exploring the said and unsaid relations.

Student films: Film & Television Institute of India

27 February, 2010, Auditorium 1

9:30 to 11:45


Dir: Abhinav Gupta
11 min, 2009, India

The film tries to recreate a moment from the lives of two strangers, who meet, get close to one another, exchange and then disappear into the crowd.

It deals with those situations where two people just collide and leave a mark forever on each other. It is about the relationship between two strangers, who happen to spend some time together on a railway platform. It takes the audience through this beautiful moment from the journey of their lives.


Dir: Lilium Leonard
20 min, 2008, India

Ladies and Gentlemen, your attention please, the Surya Circus is in town to stage your hidden fantasies! Bizarre suspension, dolls in unison, mile long hair, from death no fear, the snake and the charmer, Adam the body builder, the sharp shooter Sikander, edge of a knife, piercing eye, you or the wife, give us your salary and your pension, we have lots for your attention! But this time, the circus routine will be broken by the coming of a foreigner who will disturb the fusion like relationship of Nisha and Sandhya, the two contortionists and seamstresses of the show.

SwayambhuSenSwayambhu Sen Foresees his End

Dir: Debashish Medhekar
19 min, 2008, India

Three narrators atop a bus on the fateful rainy day of 26th July 2005 entertain those stranded by the floods with an urban legend of a extraordinary film maker who stole everything he needed to make a film , from Film Stock to cameras. But this is all the three narrators seem to agree upon – beyond this point the three narrators have three different stories.

All stories conclude in the film maker never making a film but the ‘hows’ and the ‘whys’ differ. The film delves into a third degree of removal from truth as the protagonist and all characters seem to be constituted by the people on the bus.

The film is a magical, dark journey into the possibilities of fate and the survival of true talent in the business that Indian Popular cinema has been reduced to.


Dir: Dipti Gogna
18 min, 2008, India

The Partition of the country is drawing close. Noor is a young woman grieving the death of her daughter. She exists in the dreamlike state, unable to come to terms with reality. Their servant boy, also a Muslim, is not even considering the option of going. He actually voices a lot of opinions that Noor ascribes to.

In their neighbourhood shifts a Sikh man with his young son. The man, who has migrated from would-be Pakistan, has lost his wife in one of the massacres. Noor takes a liking for the young boy but her attempts at befriending him are blatantly thwarted by the father.

Will humanity prevail in the times of collective madness?


Dir: Gulam Shaffi Khan
10 min, 2009, India

A farmer from a village in UP, India, will be flying to America for the first time to meet his brother. His village friends, Salim and Hussein, try to help him overcome his fear of flying by giving him special training, but it is Tariq, the village milkboy, who gives him courage at the end to overcome his fear.


Dir: Tathagata Singha
13 min, 2009, India

The film is a journey of the filmmakers in search of a community in Maharashtra, called the Ramoshi. They are a community who had been dubbed a criminal tribe by the British Government in the Criminal Tribes Act of 1871. Even though they were denotified in 1952 (post India’s Independence), the branding remained, overpowering the community to choose a path of crime. Now however situations have changed. The film is an exploration of this community in the present where a community faces an almost self imposed amnesia to forget the branding.

Vaishnav-Jan-TohVaishnav Jan Toh

Dir: Kaushal Oza
10 min, 2009, India

On a night when Mahatma Gandhi is visiting the village, Ba has an unexpected visitor – Pratap, a thief, has just shot a man and is seeking shelter. But the night has yet another predicament in store for Ba and Pratap. And as “Vaishnav Jan toh” is sung in a distant prayer meeting Ba’s own conviction in Gandhiji’s message will be put to test…

In the Garden

Dir: Mahashweta Burma
12 min, India

‘In the Garden,’ an adaptation of Jean Paul Sartre’s short story ‘The Room,’ explores existentialism. Malini, is caught between the world of the ‘normal’ and ‘make belief’ with her passionate desire for complete identification with Arvind, her schizophrenic husband, who she loves so dearly that she tries to make his universe her own. His universe is embodied in the closed room out of which he cannot and will not move – and she stands between two incompatible views of the world, walled out.


Dir: Rohit Sawakhande
12 min, 2009, India

After the untimely death of his parents, nine year old Chivlya is taken away from his village by his uncle (Kaka) to a small town where he runs a mess. Kaka is clueless about what to do with Chivlya, so he makes the little kid work as a water boy in the chaotic and claustrophobic mess till schools open for the next term. Unable to come to terms with this drastic change, Chivlya keeps going back to the fond memories of his school vacations spent in a scenic village with his adorable grandfather. He fluctuates between the peaceful memories of the past and the harsh realities of the present. In this confusion, Chivlya secretly writes a letter asking his grandfather to take him away. This letter becomes Chivlya last hope to escape, but the letters’ and grandfather’s destiny takes an unexpected turn.

15-AugustKal 15 August Dukan Band Rahegi

Dir: Pratik Vats
11 min, 2009, India

A group of students trying to deal with the apparent insignificance of 15th August in their lives stumble into direct confrontation with the commodified understanding of Pandrah August in modern India. The film is an attempt towards looking at life where we are still learning to live in the omnipresent backdrop of unquestioned authority.


11:55 to 13:00

Journey of Snow Flake

Dir: Rahat Jiloha
11 min, 2009, India

The film is based on the concept of meeting the right people at the right time in one’s life and the impact that it has on life ahead. Jimmy is dealing with a break up situation with his live-in girlfriend Minisha when he meets a girl named Huma at a bar one night. Dinner together becomes a part of their routine for the next few days and he begins to figure out himself through her. She soon after leaves but, it is about how he faces his life again and cherishes her memory for a long time.

lightNshadowThe Light and Her Shadow

Dir: Andrea Lannetta
11 min, 2009, India

Julia, an American painter and Avantika, a young Indian girl develop an intimate friendship based on shared difficulties of being a woman. Both are attracted to each other which brings them to an incomprehension. The film is about the complexity of human relations shown through the imaginary state of mind of the two characters.

Dhin-Tak-DhaDhin Tak Dha

Dir: Shraddha Pasi
20 min, 2008, India

Gopal, a garage mechanic, accidentally meets a group of artists who perform in different villages. He is fascinated by this new life, but soon realizes that life is not easy for them. In his own way he tries to help them through their crisis. But this helps turns into a mistake. Chief, the head of the group, doesn’t forgive him for this. Feeling guilty he leaves the group and returns to his garage only to meet them again ‘accidentally’.

KaktaliyoEkti Kaktaliyo Golpo

Dir: Tathagata Singha
10 min, 2009, India

The narrative revolves around a 13 year old boy, Babai. He is given a magic marble (which apparently has the power to summon the king of fish) by an old man who stays in the ground floor flat of his apartment. His teacher, (who stays in the same building) takes it away from him asking him to concentrate on his studies and not fantastical tales. The boy’s dreams are crushed as the sits by his window with a handmade fishing rod. However, nature with its coincidences brings about an unusual turn of events.

3 Cheers

Dir: Promod Jainarian
8 min, , India
Three Cheers is a journey in the mind space of three persons. They belong to different families, occupations, economical status and surroundings. Apart from that they have one thing common, “Dwarfness”.

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