Cinema

Out of the 'woods'

So you’ve watched superstar Rajini do his thing in ‘Kabali’ and Sallu Bhai flexing his muscles in ‘Sultan’. (It’s okay even if you haven’t.)

But if your idea of Indian movies end in the "woods", let us open your eyes. There is brilliant stuff happening in other places.

Here’s a list of some of the best films from corners of India that have escaped a "-wood" tag.

Jatt and Juliet (Punjabi)

A romantic comedy that released in 2012. The film reflects on the ‘Canadian dream’ of ordinary Punjabis and the desire of many of them to settle in Canada, even if it is through marriage to a foreigner and settling at her expense.

Watch the film >here.

Punjab 1984 (Punjabi)

Anurag Singh’s movie is on the social turmoil in Punjab during and after the Operation Blue Star. Seen through the eyes of a mother whose son went missing during police crackdown, the film came when the insurgency had completed 30 years.

Watch the film >here.

Elizabeth Ekadashi (Marathi)

Paresh Mokkashi’s delightful tale of two young siblings and their affection for a cycle, which they call ‘Elizabeth’. When desperate for finances, their widowed mother is asked to pledge their beloved bicycle, the children resort to selling bangles to gather the needed money. The director, despite the theme of poverty, keeps the treatment light and humorous, never compromising on the child-like innocence in his own heart.

Sardaarji (Punjabi)

The hilarious story of a ghost-hunter with the ability to communicate with ghosts who is summoned to a palace in London to save a marriage.

Watch the film >here.

Dr. Prakash Baba Amte: The Real Hero (Marathi)

The biopic is the story of Baba Amte’s son, Prakash and his family, who have been quietly working for the uplift of the tribal people in the jungles of Hemalkasa in Eastern Maharashtra. Directed by National Award winner Samrudhi Poray, the Marathi film has Nana Patekar and Sonali Kulkarni playing Prakash and Mandakini respectively and Mohan Agashe is Baba Amte.

Patekar, who has been associated with Amte’s family for four decades, has said that it was an honour to play one of his icons on screen.

Rajkahini (Bengali)

Rajkahini is set amid the partition of Bengal along the Radcliffe Line. Srijit Mukherjee tries to show sex workers living in a brothel along the Bengal side of the line as a microcosm of unwitting humans caught in the violence of Partition. The use of Rabindra Sangeet at many places and the lavishly mounted sets testify to the grand vision of the director.

Ishanou (Manipuri)

The 1992 Manipuri film, which was screened at various International festivals, is a cult classic directed by Aribam Syam Sharma. The movie tells a story of a young married woman who suddenly started to experience wild visions. She then goes ahead in search of Meibi Guru, who she believes to have chosen her. She finds bliss in devotion performed through dance and music. The lead actor, Anoubam Kiranmala, won the jury’s special mention at the Cannes Film Festival that year. The film belongs to the exclusive group of 27 films screened at the International Film Festival of India in 2012 in the Centenary Indian Cinema section.

Halodhiya Choraye Baodhan Khai (Assamese)

This is a National Award winning movie directed by Jahnu Barua. The movie released in 1987, is a simple story of a farmer who becomes a victim to an exploitative landowner. The story revolves around the life of the farmer and his struggle to survive against a feudal lord.


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Printable version | Jan 24, 2022 2:10:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/cinema/Out-of-the-woods/article14509548.ece

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