In the Panorama section of NIFFFI '21, we will be showcasing 11 films by 10 Indian filmmakers that focus on vanishing cultures. We have curated this section with an aim to share with our audience the importance of our broader mission and to illustrate the spirit of the Festival.
The Panorama section will run from 13th to 22nd October. We will also organise daily online discussions with the makers of these films where you will have a chance to interact and ask questions. Tune into NIFFFI's Facebook or YouTube channel to join.
Gadi Lohardaga Mail
'Gadi Lohardaga Mail' is based on Lohardaga passenger train which was discontinued in January 2004. It is a tribute to the meter gauge passenger train popularly known as Lohardaga Mail.
by Meghnath and Biju Toppo (AKHRA)
Survey Number Zero
Priya Thuvassery's 'Survey Number Zero’ is an ethnographic documentary that mirrors the lives of Hansaben, Bhawanaben and Pashiben, three women salt farmers of the Agariya community, who toil for eight months through three stages of salt farming in the Little Rann of Kutch in Gujarat. Priya takes us through the isolated landscape which provides the means of livelihood for these salt workers in her powerful documentary.
by Priya Thuvassery
All the World's a Stage
'All the World’s a Stage' weaves together the lives and aspirations of group of laymen (shopkeepers, drivers, carpenters and masons) who make up an internationally successful performance group called the Sidi Goma. The film celebrates the joyous energy of their songs and dances, while tracing their struggle to survive in a world that threatens to marginalise them even further.
by Nirmal Chander
Therukoothu - Dancing for Life
'Therukoothu - Dancing for Life' introduces to us the age old Tamil Folk Art ‘Therukoothu’. It includes live stage performances of Therukoothu artists and their performances based on Mahabharata while showing the involvement of villagers and spectators in the art form. Therukoothu artists devote their entire life to the existence of the art and their effort to transform it to the next generation is depicted in the film.
by Jimmey Luke
Echoes of the Past
Impersonation is the way of the Behrupiya life. They transcend their religious beliefs and faith using their body as a canvas expressing emotions through ‘Body Art’ combined with mastery of oratory skill of diverse dialects and accents with impressive characterisations creating commotion, entertainment and wit. The film explores the unique folk art form from a historical perspective extending to the contemporary state reflecting the plight of Behrupiyas.
Directed by Merajur Rahman Baruah
Kaise Jeebo Re
The documentary Kaise Jeebo, Re! centres around the Sardar Sarovar Dam. Upon the completion of the Bargi Dam, seven hundred metres above Sardar Sarovar, 162 villages in Madhya Pradesh were flooded. One million people lost the land they had lived on and worked for centuries. The Indian government merely considers this organised destruction of ancient tribal cultures and ecosystems a trifling price for progress.
by Jharana Jhaveri
In 2011, the Manipur government burnt down hundreds of huts in Loktak Lake, North East India in the pretext of cleaning the lake and blaming the locals for the pollution of the lake. Thousands of fishermen were displaced, became homeless and their livelihood snatched. With nowhere to go the fisherman still continued to fight the authorities. ‘Phum-Shang’ critically examines the serious environmental problems faced by the Loktak lake, the largest freshwater lake in northeast India.
by Haobam Paban Kumar
Mani Kaul takes us to Pinguli, an old village on the Konkan coast, about 32 km north of Goa where a Thakur community of sixty families has preserved for hundreds of years three different folk forms: Chitrakathi, Marionettes and Leather Puppets. This film traces the evolution of Chitrakathi, a folk form available in the Konkan area of Maharashtra, while revealing the transformation being brought about by modern life.
by Mani Kaul
The Nomad Puppeteer
'The Nomad Puppeteer' is a film about the string puppeteers of Rajasthan spread across roadside settlements between Jaipur, Delhi, Ahmedabad and Mumbai.
by Mani Kaul
Niyamgiri You are Still Alive
'Niyamgiri You Are Still Alive’ is a film on the anti-bauxite mining campaign in Orissa, India, led by the indigenous communities against Sterlite a subsidiary of the U.K. mining company Vedanta. The film won the Vasudha, Environment Award at the International Film Festival of India in Goa, 2010.
by Suma Josson
Clay Image Makers of Kumartuli
'Clay Image Makers of Kumartuli' is an attempt to understand the plight and contribution to Durga Puja, one of the biggest festivals in the world by the . It has been selected for RAJAT KAMAL for 62nd National Film awards for the year 2014 – “for its extensive study of the craft and community of the Clay Image makers in the context of time”.
by Ranajit Ray