Emraan Hashmi-starrer "Harami", Sanal Kumar Sasidharan's "A'hr" and Anant Mahadevan's "Bittersweet" are among the eight Indian titles selected for the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) this year. The 25th edition of the festival is scheduled to take place in the South Korean city from October 21 to 31. The movie gala has been pared down due to the coronavirus situation. “Harami”, directed by Shyam Madiraju, is part of the ‘New Currents’ section of BIFF selections.
“Harami” is an Indo- American production feature film penned and directed by Madiraju. Set in Mumbai, the film is described as a “hard-hitting, visually striking street saga of youth crime and broken destinies, love and redemption”.
"It was Shyam’s script that really attracted me to his project. And his obsession with details, it was very contagious,” Hashmi said about working on the film.
On making to BIFF selection, Madiraju said, “Korea is the epicenter of the filmmaking universe right now, so it’s an immense honor to be a part of their celebration of cinema this year."
“Bittersweet” follows the first person account of Saguna, a sugarcane cutter who is inducted into the fields and discovers the frightening practice of hysterectomy that is prevalent amongst the women cutters.
“‘Bittersweet’ resonates in a universal context with its theme of human exploitation at the cost of scruples and an ecosystem upheaval in the future,” Mahadevan said.
Sasidharan’s Malayalam feature “A’hr”, featuring south star Manju Warrier, is narrated through 10 songs, written in Ahr Samsa, a special language devised for the film by the team.
“Captive”, directed by Suman Mukhoponadhyay, “Matto’s Bicycle” by M Gani and Prithvi Konanur’s “WHERE IS PINKI” are part of the festival’s ‘A Window on Asian Cinema’ section, which also features Chaitanya Tamhane's “The Disciple” and Ivan Ayr's “Milestone”.
Tamhane’s “The Disciple”, looks at the world of classical musicians on the fringes of success. It follows Sharad Nerulkar (Aditya Modak), an Indian classical vocalist trying to achieve purity in his work as he has been raised on the stories of his father and guru about the masters of the past.
The film had its premiere at the Venice Film Festival last week and won the best screenplay award at the gala over the weekend.
“Milestone”, which was also screened at the Venice Film Festival, revolves around a truck driver who after losing his wife, tries to connect with his past and comes to terms with his present.
The schedule of BIFF 2020 was announced last week, with the organizers saying that the 25th edition will be downsized and all the outdoor events such as the opening and closing ceremonies are being cancelled to avoid crowds gathering due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Also there will be no international invitations, parties or receptions and all the screenings will be held in accordance with government guidelines.
Hong Kong’s “Septet: The Story of Hong Kong” will be the opening film, while Tamura Kotaro’s Japanese movie “Josee, the Tiger and the Fish” will close the festival.
This year 192 films from 68 countries are being screened at BIFF.
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