All You Need To Know About The 8th London Indian Film Festival
Posted on 21 June, 2017 by Team Wishberry
Image Courtesy: LIFF
London Indian Film Festival (LIFF) returns for its 8th edition from 22-29 June, 2017. The eight-day event will showcase a new and exciting selection of cutting-edge independent films, documentaries, mockumentaries, shorts, various panel discussions and conversations with industry biggies from India, Pakistan and Nepal.
Opening and Closing Film:
The festival will open with the red carpet premiere of Kavi Raz’s The Black Prince. The film starring Satinder Sartaaj, Shabana Azmi, Jason Flemyng and Amanda Root is the true story of Queen Victoria and the Last King of Punjab, Maharajah Duleep Singh and his lifelong struggle to regain his Kingdom.
The closing film is this year’s winner of the coveted Hivor Tiger Award at the International Film Festival of Rotterdam. Directed by Sanal Kumar Sasidharan, Sexy Durga is a Malayalam thriller that tells a tale of a hitch-hiking couple who accidentally getting into the car of unstable gangsters.
The event will witness a Virtual Reality session from Mumbai to London, a co-production case study, a talk on British Asian filmmakers on the edge of BREXIT, a look into Pratibha Parmar’s early works and a conversation with Ashutosh Gowariker.
Apart from sessions beyond cinema, the fest is also conducting a Satyajit Ray Short Film Competition for which one of Wishberry’s successfully crowdfunded films, Faraz Ansari’s multiple award-winning short, Sisak, will be competing.
Italian | Hindi – 85 min
Set in Italy, Babylon Sisters, directed by Gigi Roccati, is a feel-good musical film that highlights the power of sisterhood. A young Indian immigrant and her parents are accused of eating the local cats. As an eviction notice looms, the drastically different women of each family fight together to save their home.
Hindi – 84 min
When a legendary villain of Bollywood, Gulshan Grover, decides to re-launch himself in the film industry with the help of Chunky Pandey and Farah Khan as a good guy; the hero apprentice soon slips into increasingly hilarious and delusional situations as the group of friends plan to launch his movie. Badman, directed by Soumik Sen, explores the dark yet funny side of Bollywood where almost anything is possible.
Bengali – 100 min
Starring Soumitra Chatterjee and Sandhya Mridul, Amit Ranjan Biswas’ Bridge is a story of the chance meeting of two strangers on a suicide bridge outside Kolkata.
Egghead (Ondu Motteya Kathe)
Kannada – 123 min
Produced by Pawan Kumar of the Lucia and Wrong Turn fame, Egghead is warm-hearted comic tale of a young bald man who is trying to find his soul mate. Directed and starring Raj B. Shetty, the film focuses on some important lessons on happiness and self-love.
Marathi – 112 min
Two slum kids want nothing more than a slice of pizza, and when a pizza parlour opens near their playground, the boys are consumed by the desire to taste this new foreign dish. Realising that one pizza costs more than their family’s monthly income, they begin to plot ways to earn money, inadvertently beginning an adventure that will involve the entire city. Directed by Samit Kakkad, the film is an official remake of a Tamil film titled Kaaka Muttai.
Hide & Seek (Lapachhapi)
Marathi – 110 min
Neha, an eight months pregnant woman and her husband escape goons and are seeking shelter in their driver’s house, but the house and the surrounding eerie, impenetrable maze of sugarcane fields are rustling with secrets of a disturbing past that start appearing rapidly. Directed by debutant filmmaker Vishal Furia, the horror film is based on true events.
In Praise Of That Angel Face (Zikr Us Parivash Ka)
Hind | Urdu – 64 min
Image Courtesy: Patrika News
Zikr Us Parivash Ka provides a cradle-to-grave account of one of the last great courtesans of India, Begum Akhtar who was known as Malika-e-Ghazal. She sang the ghazal, dadra and thumri genres of Hindustani classical music. The documentary weaves together rare footage and stories of those who remember her fondly.
Hindi – 106 min
Image Courtesy: The Wire
Directed by Amit Masurkar, Newton is an award-winner at the Berlin International Film Festival. The film is a delightful black comedy of an everyday clerk who is selected for election duty in the conflict-ridden Chhattisgarh. As local police and Maoists harass the locals and the voting process spirals out of control, morally driven Newton becomes a reluctant hero in his zest to save the day.
The Argumentative Indian
Urdu – 64 min
This piece offers an insight into the mind of Amartya Sen, Nobel laureate and one of the world’s greatest living economists and philosophers. Structured as a conversation, this rare film explores Mr. Sen’s formative years in Shantiniketan, to his college in Kolkata and his academic career in the US and the UK.
Urdu – 93 min
Amongst the pulsating cityscape of Karachi, Pakistan, a young man brought up to a life of underworld vice and killings attends the wedding of a rival gangster clan, where he falls for the proud daughter of a rival Don. The film, directed by Harune Massey, also has a special appearance by Naseeruddin Shah.
White Sun (Seto Surya)
Nepali – 89 min
Directed by Deepak Rauniyar, White Sun communicates the realities of life post a war between states. The plot follows a rural Nepali family’s attempts to cope with the weight of a decade-long civil war. The film has been lauded the world over, winning awards at the Venice, Palm Springs and Singapore Film Festival.
The festival will also be screening a few favourite Indian festival films of A Billion Colour Story, Hotel Salvation, Jodhaa Akhbar, Lady of the Lake, Once Again (Pinneyum) and The Cinema Travellers. After the festival, a few selected films will be made available on BFI’s VOD service. Do visit their website for more details.