BHUBANESWAR: The Indian Documentary Film of Bhubaneswar (IDFFB), which is organised by Film Society Bhubaneswar (FSB) in association with Vikalp, India Foundation of the Arts (IFA) and Kerala Chalachitra Academy, was inaugurated at the Odissi research centre here Friday.
The festival involves screening of acclaimed documentary films from across the subcontinent. The focus of the festival is to showcase unseen stories from across the region to our audience. In addition to the film screenings, there will be movie quizzes, music events and writing competitions, poetry and literary readings for students to explore cinema from different dimensions.
FSB secretary Subrat Beura said, “Documentaries have the power to depict and reflect reality. They serve as a powerful tool, which brings important topics to the table in a captivating way that sparks conversations and sometimes even social movements. Character-driven, feature-length documentaries focused on the stories of real people put a human face on global issues that might otherwise seem distant.”
Seven movies were screened on the first day. The first movie to be screened was The Tribal Scoop by Biswaranjan Pradhan. The movie is set in a small town of Sundergarh. It depicts the life of the natives, who metamorphose hockey, a game which was only a form of entertainment, into their lifeline in their battle against the clutches of urbanization, which threatens their serene ecology and peaceful existence.
Next up was Gurvinder Singh’s Pala, which dealt with the diversity of centuries-old storytelling and musical tradition. It showcased a folk religion which has assimilated the traits of three principal faiths of Punjab, namely Hinduism, Sikhism and Islam.
The second half of the day saw the screening of Kho Ki Pa Lu. The name of the movie is a phrase used to describe polyphony in Chokri language of Nagaland. Filmmakers Anushka Meenakshi and Iswar Srikumar researched on the rhythms of work songs of Phek village in Nagaland. They traversed through the ordinary life in India, and documented through sound, film, and performance, focusing especially on the serene synergy between music and labour.
Santosh Gour’s Shyama Mani Devi depicts the journey of the legendary Odissi vocalist. Shyama Mani, a staunch devotee of Lord Jagannath, is one of the foremost exponents of Odissi music. Director Santosh Gaur also participated in a panel discussion after the screening.
The day rounded off in rewarding fashion with enfant terrible of 21st-century Indian cinema Qaushiq Mukherjee participating in the panel discussion on the movie Nabarun. It depicts the story of Bengali writer and poet Nabarun Bhattacharya.
In contrast to majority of Bengalis who championed ‘bhadralok’ literature, infamous magic realist Nabarun Bhattacharya’s literary output was packed with a fractured prose style replete with abuses and often veering into magical realism, he said.