10 Indian Short Films That Proved 2017 Was the Year of Good, Independent Cinema
Everyone loves short films – they're power-packed performances that convey good stories in a short span of time. This year, we saw the film industry open up and give us more quality short films than ever before. Thanks to the free, and wide accessibility of the internet as a medium, short films are also becoming a favourite with actors and directors. So here are the top 10 Indian short films from this year that definitely deserved an Oscar.
This Shefali Shah-starrer had us all looking inward, and at our families to see how we treat our women. The subtle, and not-so-subtle, gender biases we see in our own homes every day is the focal point here, and director Neeraj Ghaywan brings it out perfectly – just enough to make the audience uncomfortable and force them to rethink their views on gender.
This six-minute film tells a heart-warming story that will leave you smiling. Anupam Kher plays a widower, who is busy making kheer for his grandchildren, who are about to arrive. In the meantime, he also has his sights set on Natasha Rastogi, and wonders if he can find love again.
Tisca Chopra stars in another mind blowing short film that deals with infidelity in urban India. Her role as homemaker, who discovers her husband has been cheating on her, is a rare female character – one who is calm, collected, and conniving. She converses with the mistress, trying to gauge her psychologically, instead of heatedly reacting to the situation.
Kalki Koechlin and Ritabhari Chakraborty star in this short film that talks about how the unfairly the media treats female actors, and how at the end of the day they are also women. It also layers it with the kind of abuse women face on a daily basis – from online harassment to sexual abuse.
Khaney Mein Kya Hai?
This funny, relatable, and heartwarming film follows a theme many young women are familiar with – talking to your parents about sex. The story shows a mother and her newly married daughter talking casually about her recent honeymoon, and how the daughter broaches the topic of sex with her mother in a casual, careful, and calculated manner.
Jai Mata Di
Terribly Tiny Tales comes with another quirky, funny, and relatable short film about love in urban India. A young, unmarried couple want to move in together, but face the expected obstacles of society and their landlord. The solution they come up with is far from expected.
The growing talk of artificial intelligence has us all wondering what our future holds. Anukul gives us a small peek in to that future, when a man (Saurabh Shukla) hires a robot to help him out with his daily chores. Based on a short story by Satyajit Ray, this sci-fi film will make you think.
The Manliest Man
This hard-hitting short film looks at one of the biggest issues India faces – gender inequality. The story follows a poor potter in a small village in India, who has only daughters, and no sons. The village, which is deeply entrenched in archaic norms of patriarchy, caste, and religion, treats him like an outcast for it. How he deals with it, and the lesson we learn at the end of it is what make this a worthwhile film.
India's first silent LGBTQ film had everyone talking. Directed by Faraz Ansari, the film shows a growing relationship between two men who are regulars on the Mumbai local trains. The silence plays toward showing the nuances in their feelings for each other, their hesitation, and more importantly society's gagging of anything that is not straight. The full film, unfortunately, is not available on YouTube as of yet.
Literally translating into “Mother promise” or “Maa kasam”, this slice-of-life Marathi short film will take you on a trip down memory lane. The story follows a young boy, who worryingly follows his aunt around after his cousin casually swears on her life. A phrase we have all used regularly, as kids, becomes the focus of the film, which reminds us how a child looks at the world, and how, sometimes, we shouldn't lose that innocence.
These 10 films are only a part of the wonderful list short films we saw this year. Which other short film would you add to this list?