When small-budget films shine brighter than star-studded ones

Many in the industry believe that any movie made with an individualistic spirit is a ‘indie’ film. But, by definition an indie is a small-budget film made and distributed by an independent source, without involving a big brand. In India, film distribution is a big hurdle and often happens only with the help of established studios.

The new wave of indie movies are changing all that. The star of these movies is the script. n a low budget. In the marketplace called Bollywood, where movies with more than Rs. 100 crore budget fail, movies with a budget of Rs. 2 Crore or less are now making waves both home and away. Masaan tops my list:

Directed by Neeraj Ghaywan, the movie has Richa Chadda, Shweta Tripathi and Deepak Chaudhary in the lead roles. The movie revolves around the lives of two women who live in Varanasi. At the Cannes Film Festival the film won the FIPRESCI Prize in the debut films category.




A road-drama film, directed by Geetu Mohandas has Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Geetanjali Thapa in the lead roles. The movie deals with the issue of the human cost of migration to cities and the issue of migrant labourers and their exploitation, through the story of young mother, living in remote village, whose husband goes missing after having left to work many months ago. The movie won two National Awards- Best Actress Geetanjali Thapa) and Best Cinematography (Rajeev Ravi).




Mumbai Cha Raja or Mumbai’s King, is an independent film directed by debutant Manjeet Singh. The film features Rahul Bairagi, Tejas Parvatkar, Dhanashree Jain and Aftab Khan in the lead role. The movie revolves around Rahul, a mischievous adolescent who roams in the rain-soaked slums of Mumbai with Arbaaz, a balloonseller. They escape harsh reality of life by roasting stolen potatoes and stealing an auto rickshaw for a joyride.


A black-and-white psychological drama, directed by Karan Gour saw Rasika Duggal, Alekh Sangal, Sudhir Pednekar and Adityavardhan Gupta in the lead roles. The movie is about A middle-class Indian housewife, Chhaya (Rasika Dugal) who is obsessed with an expensive sculpture of the goddess Lakshmi and is determined to possess it despite the fact that she and her husband Arvind (Alekh Sangal) have little money.

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