Yesterday (August 22, 2018), the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) officially came to an end. In recent years, India has gradually broken through the stereotypes of Bollywood, and many excellent works have entered the sights of fans. For example, Dangal in 2016, Toilet-Ek Prem Katha in 2017 and Padman in this year reflect the women’s problems in India’s current society from different angles. This is a new time since the Three Idiots (2009), Indian movies have once again attracted the attention of cineaste around the world. In addition, Indian films have long seemed to give the impression of Bollywood for dances. Although the beautiful costumes and the form of singing and dancing make the film fascinating, it is easy for the viewers to feel tired. Compared to the enthusiasm but superficial of Bollywood movies, recent Indian films have produced a large number of works that focus on social contradictions.
The 2018 IFFM is supported by Victoria State, and the film festival sets the different units from traditional Bollywood to avant-garde independent films. It also includes different theme units such as Bollywood dance competitions and movies for children, which are all inclusive in India’s unique style. As Mitu Bhowmick Lange, the program director of IFFM, said, the theme of this festival is “inclusion, so whether it’s about gender, sexuality, race, being differently able, or just being an outsider”. This theme is evident in the opening, closing and premiere films. The opening film, called Love Sonia, tells the story of the girl, Sonia, being involved in the vicious global sex trade network. The closing film Sir, through the stories of the two protagonists of different economic and social backgrounds, reveals the complexity of the traditional Indian caste/class system in modern society. Silent movie White is the first batch of winners in the competition unit, telling the story of the heroine’s surviving under the threat of rape through three stories. Problems, such as network sex transactions, caste systems, and women’s security, are some of the deep-rooted in Indian society, and some are new types of crimes that come with globalisation. It can be seen that the Indian film does not just follow a hot spot, but concentrated on reflecting the real problem.
As the seventh art, the film, like music, has a more intimate distance with the public. In addition to the development of the network, the film is also a tycoon in the entertainment industry, and a variety of film festivals are also growing. Fortunately, the promoters of the film festival and the directors who make the film mostly have the qualities and beliefs of contemporary artists. Each film festival has a unique theme and audiences, all taking risks in a specific area of the film. These film festivals will not accelerate the pace under the fast-food culture of the Internet. However, they spread the idea of communicator innovation and discussion of profound issues. Just like the IFFM of this year, it is a good example, which the film festival still develops into a good part of the film culture.
Finy. (2018). Indian Film Festival of Melbourne 2018. Weekend NOTES. Retrieved from https://www.weekendnotes.com/indian-melbourne-film-festival/
Lange, M. B. (2018). Message from IFFM Festival Director. FILM VICTORIA AUSTRALIA. Retrieved from http://www.iffm.com.au/message-director.html
IFFM 2018. (2018). Closing Night. FILM VICTORIA AUSTRALIA. Retrieved from http://www.iffm.com.au/closing.html
IFFM 2018. (2018). Opening Night. FILM VICTORIA AUSTRALIA. Retrieved from http://www.iffm.com.au/opening.html
Aneek. (2018). WHITE TEASER 1. vimeo. Retrieved from https://vimeo.com/248183067