Art and Experience:

The 2019 Indian Film Festival Los Angeles concluded on May 27 with the grand prize going to Thamizh’s directorial debut “Seththumaan” (Pig) and Karishma Dev Dube’s short “Bittu.”

“It’s a phenomenal first feature, gentle and impactful, done with heart and guts, that is at the same time very candid and very mature and complex,” the features jury said of “Pig,” calling it “a film that impressed us tremendously, both in terms of filmmaking and dramaturgy.”

The jury gave an honorable mention to Malayali film “Biriyaani,” by Sajin Baabu. “The film included an incredibly powerful performance by the lead, Kani Kusruti,” the jury said in a statement.

The shorts jury praised Dube’s “Bittu.” “A spectacular film about a brilliant young girl with a foul tongue who discovers that her defiance is lifesaving,” the jury said. Honorable mentions in the shorts category went to Rima Das’ “For Each Other,” Upamanyu Bhattacharyya and Kalp Sanghvi’s “Wade” and Nivita Chaliki, star of “Forever Tonight.”

 

Audience awards went to Ajitpal Singh’s feature “Fire in the Mountains” and Aarti Neharsh’s short “The Song We Sang.”

Running virtually from May 20-27, the 19th edition of the festival showed 40 films to audiences in India, for the first time, as well as California, after being absent due to the pandemic lockdown last year. The films were in 17 languages, and included 16 women directors.

Source: Variety