IDSFFK 2017 Day 2: Urvashi Butalia's The Books We Made, Bleeding Hearts stand out as highlights
The 10th International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala (IDSFFK) which began yesterday at the capital of Kerala Thiruvananthapuram turned out to be a refreshing experience for film aficionados who turned out in large numbers to enjoy, study and discuss. The films in the campus section and filmmakers in focus stood out with their insights into the hidden realities of life.
The different categories of films screened also included short documentaries, animation films, focus section, Vienna Shorts and international section.
The film FUGUE directed by Vivek Joseph Varughese and screened in the campus section is a slow moving drama woven around the life of a lonely girl Ashley. It told about how her perspective of life and relationships was changed as a stranger Roy, who came into her life unexpectedly.
Roy induced a passion for life in her. She was feeling isolated in her life and had always felt dejected as she was an illegitimate child. The earning for a mother who is all solacing was there in her mind, but her mother was different. When Roy told her about his mother and her soothing presence she wanted to meet her and Roy agreed. But Roy soon disappeared and she found that Roy was the strangest thing that ever happened in her life. He was a psychotic patient whose mother died in an accident following which he started living in his own world. He built a world with his mother before strangers. When people realized the reality, he walked away from them in search of strangers.
Another film in the campus section Bleeding Hearts by Harshit Pachauri is the story of inner conflicts of lovers Shikha & Isha.. Shikha is a professional Bharthanatyam dancer while Isha is a professional writer. Shikha is a girl who keeps her emotions and feelings intact while Isha wears them on her sleeve. Shikha‘s family pressurizes her to get married. Fed up with the pressure, Shikha decides to bow down to the families wish. But she manages to find a middle path by arranging a marriage with a gay man. However, that went against the understanding between the lovers.
Another film screened in the campus section, Arrow of Time directed by Manoj C Haridas portrayed the inner emotions and silence of an old man named Michael. The film portrays his arrow of time.
The Books We Made screened in the documentary section is a short film on feminist publishing featuring Urvashi Butalia,
The Books We Made transported spectators back in time to 1984, when two women began what was arguably India’s first feminist editorial, Kali for Women, which printed books written by women and for one audience that was largely female, at a time when women had no voice. The film also offered insight into the lives of interesting women, brave women; This documentary has been part of the annual Open Frame festival.
Kumbh, a short film by Umesh Kulkarni portrayed two young men on a blind date start their journey outside the city. Unknowingly they become a part of maze of a pilgrimage of sadhus. They look around, they observe, they smile, they doubt, they whisper. They are lost, they are found.
Vipin Vijay’s Chitrasootra which was screened in the competition category of Rotterdam International Film Festival was one of the attractions in the Filmmaker in Focus.
Chitrasootra dealt with the life of three people both as an online and offline conversation between an internet hacker, part time network trainer, black magician grandfather and a cyborg. Vipin Vijay said his film is not a story with beginning, middle and end. It is an ocean of stories. Several stories will begin at the point where one story ends. This creates grand narrative. According to him the narration is rooted in the story telling tradition of India.
Films in the category Soundphiles, a new experience in hearing was one of the other specialities in the festival. It is the technique of telling stories by the deployment of sound. Those categories of films were first introduced in Asian Women’s Festival 2014.
In the international section, many interesting films were screened. Haloperidol, directed by Jose Manuel Carrasco ofSpain, Ashamed directed by Miguel Casanova also from Spain, A Secret Heart by Cary Sawhney/UK and I'm not your Negro, by Raoul Peck of France/USA were some of the films in the international category that won the appreciation of spectators. Along with the festival, the open forum at the theatre and a male vocal percussion ensemble by a group Asima added spice to the second day of the festival.