Indie

Whale Music (1994)

FiC Rating: 5/5
Dir: Richard J. Lewis
Why FiC recommends?
1) As a cinephile, finding a movie this original is something to sing about. It’s weird movie, true; but this film has created a world that is wonderful and bleak. The direction is beautifully good, the cinematography is perfection, the screenplay is professionally written, and the connection between all of the characters are just so enduring. It is a film that you will not regret giving a shot.
2) The music in this alone is worth seeking this picture out for. The soundtrack of Rheostatics is brilliant, the moments that make this film a musical are the ones that keep the story alive with moments of joviality and enthusiasm.

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Ghamak Ghar/2019/Maithili,Hindi

FiC Rating: 5/5
Dir: Achal Mishra
Setting: Rural
Why FiC recommends?
1) A rare slice-of-life drama coming from India, where a ‘home’ in a village acts as the protagonist. This gem of a film effortlessly pumps in nostalgia – so much so that – if you’re someone with your roots in a village, you may start feeling guilty once the movie ends! (be careful!!)
2) To see this ‘home’ stands still and witness three generations pass through it- is a heart-whelming experience yet somehow painful. In my opinion a full on 5-star film!
Note: If you’re a filmmaker have a close look into this amazing cinematography, where the film embodies three different looks in its runtime!

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Frances Ha/2012/English

FiC Rating: 4/5
Dir: Noah Baumbach
Setting: Urban

Why FiC recommends?
1) Kids or teenagers are often at the heart of every coming-of-age story depicted in films.The beauty of this film is that it follows the same trajectory but this time for a 27 year old Frances.

2) The character of Frances is portrayed beautifully by Greta Gerwig in what is a semi autobiographical depiction of her struggles while building her career. Frances is not a role model but she is the portrayal of all of us.This is not a film.This is life and all of us needs the indomitable spirit of Frances to rise above the challenges thrown to us.

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Bhonsle/2018/Hindi,Marathi

FiC Rating: 4/5
Dir: Devashish Makhija

Why FiC recommends?
1) After spine chilling debut ‘Ajji’, Mr.Makhija’s 2nd feature also follows thematically the same path to bring out the filth in the society.
2) The central plot is around the never ending ‘insider-outsider’ conflict that Mumbai has been bearing since decades. Manoj Bajpayee who is also the co-producer of the film, gives yet another stellar performance on screen.
3) This slow paced film uses only four major characters (a retired cop, a local wannabe politician, a nurse and her younger brother) but leaves behind a long lasting impression because of director’s uncompromising style of storytelling.

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Nasir/2019/Tamil

FiC Rating: 4/5
Dir: Arun Karthick
Setting: Town
Why FiC recommends?
1) Among all the cinema genres out there, there’s a special one – ‘important films’. These are the kind of films which reveal something important about the times we live in. Nasir deserves a place in this category.
2) The film captures a day of a common man. It starts with his morning, traverses through his monotonous uninteresting day and ends with.. okay, let me not add any spoiler.
3) Personally, I didn’t like the climax of this film, but at the same time I am well aware that a climax of that sort was important for the director to tell something solid.

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Post Tenebras Lux/2012/Spanish,French,English

FiC Rating: 4/5
Dir: Carlos Reygadas
Why FiC recommends?
1) Despite many complaints on this film that – ‘it’s a very personal film from the director which has nothing to do with the viewer’, it is one of those very few rule-breaking cinemas to have redefined ‘what a cinema could be’.
2) Yes! it demands a lot of patience from the viewer. It’s not because there’s nothing happening through the length of the film which someone can easily comprehend, but because of its sheer exploratory style.

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Sulemani Keeda/2013/Hindi

FiC Rating: 3.5/5
Dir: Amit V Masurkar
Setting: Urban

Why FiC recommends?
1) The story of two friends who are trying their luck as script writers and hoping to make it big in Bollywood films. A very simple story yet very engaging.
2) Through pun and satire, the director wants to tell the world how absurd and unstructured the film industry usually runs in India.

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Subconscious Cruelty /2000 / English

FiC Rating: 4/5
Dir: Karim Hussain

Why FiC recommends?
1) Breath-taking from start to finish, creators Karim Hussain and Mitch Davis Arthouse Horror anthology ‘Subconscious Cruelty’ is an experience which, of course, will not be supported by many people, but which, and that was the goal, turns out to be honest, generous and of extreme quality.
2) Subconscious Cruelty” stomps its boot on the throat of representability, pushing the envelope of the New Extremism further than almost any other film, and opening a whole new can of worms when it comes to the uses and abuses of extreme content.

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Tokyo Trash Baby (Tôkyô gomi onna)/2000/Japanese

FiC Rating: 3.5/5
Dir by: Ryuichi Hiroki
Setting: Suburban/Small-town

Why FiC recommends?
1) It’s a low-key character study, shot on digital video for almost no money, and brings the viewer very close to the experience of Miyuki (Mami Nakamura), which increases sympathy for this character.

2) The film is part of “Love Cinema” series along with along with Takashi Miike’s “Visitor Q” among others, and all the films are shot on DV.

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Gali Guleiyan/2017/Hindi

FiC Rating: 4/5
Dir: Dipesh Jain
Setting: Urban
Why FiC recommends?

1) A voyeuristic gaze on the maze like alleyways of old Delhi’s underbelly and a breathtaking psychological study of the frigid characters imprisoned inside the strangulating universe longing to break free from this confinement
2) The semi cloistered lives represent the different shadowy corners of a turbulent social structure distantly sharing an excruciating existence amidst harrowing urban isolation. The silence is not empty, rather it’s the quietude before storm and often relentless emotion erupts out of the screen and engulfs you completely.

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Gummo/1997/English

FiC Rating: 4/5
Dir: Harmony Korine
Setting: Countryside
Why FiC recommends?
1) When Gummo was released in 1997, New York Times wrote ‘Worst film of the year. In 2017 Nic Castillon of Daily Emerald wrote justifying why Gummo is one of best films in 20 years. So Gummo is definitely not an ordinary film. It has got equal attacks and praises in its kitty.
2) The film is a true indie production where the entire focus is on telling the misery of an american tornado-prone village. Camera (most of the times the handheld one) is just an ‘eye’ here. You won’t see any filmschool techniques. No definitive storyline, plot etc. But it is stuffed enough to hit you hard. Just that one has stick to it and enter the shoes of the people living there.

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Coherence/2013/English

FiC Rating: 3.5/5
Dir: James Ward Byrkit
Setting: Urban

Why FiC recommends?
1) This film is an outstanding example of how a thrilling and wonderful film can be made with a shoe string budget and an original mind blowing concept.
2) This is a Sci-Fi which has practically zero special effects but still hooks you to the proceedings till the climax.

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B.A.Pass/2012/Hindi

FiC Rating: 4/5
Dir: Ajay Bahl
Setting: Town

Why FiC recommends?
1) To just tag it as an erotic drama would not do justice to the kind of film it is. It’s lot more than that.
2) Each character has been tailored so carefully that you connect with each one of it. It is a daring portrayal of the vulnerabilities of adolescence.

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Lucia/2013/Kannada

FiC Rating: 4.5/5
Dir: Pawan Kumar
Setting: Urban

Why FiC recommends?
1) The way a film built may not be an important factor for recommending a movie. Nevertheless, it’s important to note that this well made multi-genre movie is a crowd funded project (which I’ve not considered in the rating).
2) This non-linear film tries to cover a lot of things in 135 minutes. It is about the other side of ‘stardom’, love, urbanization, Film-mafia, drugs and euthanasia.

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Gandu/2010/Bengali

FiC Rating: 4.5/5
Dir: Qaushiq Mukherjee
Setting: Town
Why FiC recommends?
1) It’s a quite daring take on the lonliness of a lost (not literally) young man. The biggest plus point is the film doesn’t hide any thoughts of the protagonist.
2) It dares not to sugarcoat the qualities of its protagonist – which is inherently common in most of the films. We see Gandu as he is.
3) The relationship (friendship?) between Gandu and Rickshaw is fascinating to watch.

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S*** Durga/2017/ Malayalam

FiC Rating: 5/5
Dir: Sanal Kumar Sasidharan
Setting: Road/Moving Vehicle/Rural
Why FiC recommends?
1) This film gives a tight slap to the patriarchal society which claims to worship Goddesses.
2) The making is one of its kind and as the movie progresses it becomes hard to digest because it’s so hard-hitting in what it tries to convey!
3) The whole movie was shot in one night and without a written script.
Note: The movie isn’t released in India because the Govt has put a ban on it.

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Autohead/2016/Hindi

FiC Rating: 5/5
Dir: Rohit Mittal
Setting: Urban/Suburban
Why FiC recommends?
1) Deepak Sampat’s performance in this flick as a ‘disturbed-mind’ is simply incomparable!
2) The trick that movie uses onto audience in it’s format & techniques is brilliant. It’s one of the rare indie masterpiece coming out of India.

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