Memories In March connects us with the life of Aarti (played by Deepti Naval), a middle aged woman who goes to Kolkata to pick up her deceased son’s belongings, only to learn about his world and find that she didn’t really know him at all. Ghosh will also introduce Just Another Love Story, an awe-inspiringly brave tale about two generations of transsexuals in Bengal and the life and loves of a famous, female impersonator Chapal Bhaduri, as told through the eyes of a gay Delhi director. A definite family favourite will be the warm-hearted White Elephant, about a ceremonial elephant who is worshipped by a village in Kerala. Each year the elephant chooses which villager will look after him. But elephants are high maintenance! Much to everyone’s surprise the wily giant taps the local drunk on the shoulder with his trunk. The drunkard and his family are beside themselves but the elephant god must be obeyed. Winner of National Award The Way Home sensitively explores fears of terrorism and nationhood in the modern state of India. A young doctor (played by Kerala star Prithviraj) accedes to a dying woman’s request that he will agree to re-unite her son with his father. He agrees not realising that the father is in fact the leader of an Indian Jihadi terrorist group. The Closing Night Film is the UK Premiere hit movie Autograph, where a young filmmaker gets his big break, not only to remake the classic film Nayak by master filmmaker Satyajit Ray, but to also to direct the city’s greatest superstar. As the production proceeds new found power and the promise of fame go to his head, while he has to compromise all, including his girlfriend, to follow his dream. The Festival covers a wide range of themes and issues from family dramas, coming-of age tales to twisted, urban teen-romance. Uniting these films is a new more assured Indian cool, experimenting with cinematic styles, sexual liberality, new technology and influenced by themes both East and West, which has helped new Indian cinema win favour with the young in-crowd in super cities like Mumbai, as well as with connoisseurs of world cinema across the globe. Cary Rajinder Sawhney, Festival Director comments, "In addition to showing great movies, we also aim to help get these films talked about and screened more broadly in cinemas in the UK, in the same way that Iranian cinema has been. London of course has a huge Asian audience for these movies, but many non-Asian Brits would also like to find out more about the 1.2 billion strong India of today, and cinema is a great way to do this."
Well, the ‘baap’ of all exclusive is here. I mean, the ‘bad-boy’ ‘naughty’ movie of the year Delhi Belly will be having its world premiere at this year’s London Indian Film Festival (LIFF) at Cineworld, Haymarket on 30 June. Delhi Belly will open the LIFF this year. With a nod to Brit-gangster flicks such as Snatch, it tells the story of a group of hapless mates who end up being hunted by the local mafia after one of them accidently mixes up a smuggler’s package with his stool sample (He ate some dodgy Tandoori chicken). The film reaches its climax in true heist style with a riot of mix-ups and high-speed chases, while unsuspecting English tourists duck for cover. Delhi Belly will have its worldwide release the next day, July 1. Other highlights of the festival include a special screening of Colours Of Passion at the V&A, homage to the revolutionary painter Raja Ravi Varma whose paintings in the 1890s influenced modern Indian art and cinema. The film by Ketan Mehta pushes the envelope of eroticism as the painter seduces his gorgeous muse, leading to Bombay’s scandal of the century, it a great complement to the V&A’s Cult of Beauty season. Anurag Kashyap is at the BFI Southbank with his shocking new film That Girl In Yellow Boots which tells the story of a young girl of UK/Indian mixed parentage who goes in search of her Indian father in Mumbai but discovers a terrible secret in the squalid underbelly of the city of dreams. One of Kolkata’s top directors Rituparno Ghosh changes sides of the camera to act in two new sophisticated films that reinforce Kolkata’s reputation as a major challenger to Bollywood.