Your July watchlist: Wishberry's Indie Picks from Netflix and Amazon Prime
Posted on 7 July, 2017 by Team Wishberry
Budhia Singh - Born to Run
Indian indie films have been gifted a new lease of life with coming of both Netflix and now, Amazon Prime. Although, browsing through the various categories can be a task and both Netflix and Amazon have the nasty habit of suggesting popular films first (or is it just me because I have been ODing on Gilmore Girls!), we have put together a list of indie Indian films that you need to catch up on July.
The Violin Player (2015)
Adman Bauddhayan Mukherji’s second feature film, The Violin Player tells the tale of an altruist violin player who plays for Hindi cinema and his chance meeting with a producer that changes his life dramatically. Starring popular Bengali actor Ritwick Chakraborty and indie’s cinema’s current favourite Adil Hussain, the film is melodious and will give you a lot to think about!
The Karma Killings (2016)
The infamous Nithari killings of Noida are still etched in the minds of one and all. And so it was with Indian-American filmmaker Ram Devineni. His documentary details every aspect of the gruesome crime, which claimed the lives of innocent children and makes an unusual argument as well.
30 Days in September (2016)
Playwright Mahesh Dattani’s critically acclaimed stage production, 30 Days in September deals with child sexual abuse and the ripple effect that such trauma can cause in the life of adults. With a mother and daughter struggling to come to terms with horrid facts from the daughter’s life, the play was billed as “Powerful and disturbing,” by The New York Times. It ran to packed theatres all across and now, you can watch it on Netflix. Directed by Dattani, the film stars theatre’s darlings, Ira Dubey, Kaizad Gandhi, Padmavati Rao and Vipin Sharma.
Brahman Naman (2016)
If you haven’t watched this indie flick then you need to. Directed by Qaushiq Mukherjee or Q (director and writer of the 2010 indie hit Gandu), Brahman Naman is a coming-of-age story set in 70s or 80s India (Bengaluru to be precise). In a nutshell, the film follows a quizzing team as they set out to achieve their goals, which include losing their virginity. The film was Netflix’s first Indian production and it was also screened in the World Cinema Dramatic Competition section at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.
Moh Maya Money (2016)
Director Munish Bharadwaj’s tale of a middle-class couple caught in a web of lies, deception and moral bankruptcy manages to keep its audiences interested because of sheer acting prowess of actors Ranvir Shorey and Neha Dhupia. The film lags a little, but that is no reason for giving it a miss because Moh Maya Money is an apt tale of greed running over the seemingly average life of people living in metropolises.
Budhia Singh – Born to Run (2016)
First-time writer-director Soumendra Padhi’s epic tale about India’s youngest marathon runner is a must watch. The film stars manoj Bajpayee and he plays Budhia’s (played effortlessly by Mayur Mahendra Patole) coach Biranchi Das. The story tracks the duo as they run towards different goals — a young Budhia runs away from abject poverty and Das is probably running towards glory. The film went on to win many awards including the National Award for Best Children’s Film.
Filmmaker Rohit Mittal’s Autohead won the Best Actor Award (Deepak Sampat) at the prestigious Bucheon Film Festival in 2016 as well as a special mention at MAMI 2016. The film explores the filmmaking device of a ‘film within a film’ as it tells the story of a documentary crew unearthing gruesome secrets about their film’s main character — a Mumbai-auto driver.
Apart from the above-listed names, Kothanodi, Sairat, Raghav Raman 2.0, For The Love of a Man, and Thithi are some of the other amazing indie films that you should watch this month, if your haven’t already.
Hindi Medium (2017)
The Irrfan Khan starrer, which released in May, became a surprise hit. The endearing tale of a middle-class couple trying to fit in a world that glorifies our colonial hangover, the film is the perfect example of an indie film making it big!
A Death in the Gunj (2017)
After winning many, many awards internationally, Konkana’s Sen Sharma’s directorial venture released in India to critical acclaim. Watch this film for its tight screenplay that eloquently deals with a coming-of-age tale, and excellent acting!
This biopic on a 13-year-old girl from Telangana who went on to became the youngest person to climb Mount Everest, is Rahul Bose’s second directorial venture after the 2001 Everybody Says I’m Fine. The simple storytelling technique coupled with a story that talks of the proverbial underdog, makes Poorna a heart-warming tale.
Kaagaz Ki Kashti (2015)
A documentary on the legendary ghazal maestro Jagjit Singh, this film details the artist’s life as both an enigma and as a human not unknown to human errors. Directed by National Award winning filmmaker Brahmanand S. Singh, this documentary will help all Jagjit Singh fans relive the magic spun by him (both on and off stage).
Documentary India (2014)
This collection of 10 award-winning Hindi documentaries courtesy NDTV is a must-watch! It includes titles such as Choone Do Aasmaan, Tibet Ki Tasveer and Mein Akeli.