Review By : Movie Run Time : 1 hour 27 minutes

Production: Rima Das Cast: Bhanita Das Direction: Rima Das Story: Rima Das Cinematography: Rima Das Editing: Rima Das

Village Rockstars is an Assamese movie written, directed, produced, shot and edited by a single woman Rima Das. The audiography has been done by Mallika Das. The movie bagged four National awards and is also India's official nomination for the Oscars. Is this film actually worth the awards and laurels? Read ahead to know.

Village Rockstars traces the life of a girl, Dhunu (Bhanita Das) and her set of friends who aspire to form a rock band. Whether they achieve it or not forms the crux of the story.

Set in the director's village, Chhaygaon, the film starts off with a note where the director calls this as a tribute to place she comes from. This is indeed a well crafted tribute. The essence of Village Rockstars hits you, not when you're inside the cinema hall, but once you come out of it. Amidst all the noise, chatter and traffic outside, the value of the film increases exponentially and shows us how beautiful silence can be. 

What is beautiful about the film is not just the characters' acting or the technical efforts or the story. I've often wondered, what will happen if a camera gets a life and goes on a spree to shoot things it finds aesthetic? All this without a man operating it... that is how I felt while watching this. Rima Das captures the essence of the Assamese soil in such a way that, you can sense her boast by saying "This is my place. Where have you been so long. Let me show you the unseen, and make you feel the magic." When you have so much stuff with you, there is no wrong in boasting.

The film doesn't a defined soundtrack as such. Rather, the stridulation of crickets, the river slipping, sliding and slapping the rocks, the breezy winds passing through the lush greenery... all these sounds are captured precisely.

The brilliance in writing too adds a lot of strength to the movie.  Most of actors in the movie are debutants and they've literally lived the role. None of them seem to be conscious of the camera. Especially, the lead, Bhanita Das carries the innocence of her character like a professionally trained actor. The innocence in the movie is infectious and we can't help but blush at a few moments of cuteness. For example, the group of 5 children go on the road to protest against the floods, and start chanting "Ban the floods, Ban the rains!" (This is not a spoiler. The scene appears in the trailer on YouTube.)

As a film, Village Rockstars fights a lot issues in the most delicate and practical ways possible.

The film has its take on Gender based stereotypes. There are scenes that showcase the equality between genders and smash the stereotypes surrounding them. We have a scene where a girl pumps water, while a boy washes the plates.

The film showcases the ever going conflict between humans and nature. In a beautiful sequence, while going to the school, the group of kids have to climb a steep area. As one of the guys slips down, he clutches a patch of grass to climb up. Immediately we see a fellow classmate whizzing past in a cycle, and all these kids run behind him and try throwing stones at him.

They all know that they cannot afford a cycle. That is also the problem with the kids starting a band. Money. When they see a guitar, someone misinforms them at the price is 500 rupees. Their mouths open wide in shock. Imagine what would have they felt, when they get to know that in reality it's 10 times more.

When all these issues come together, do they still manage to form the band? Take a trip to Chhaygaon to find out. Don't forget to spend some time by the rivers, and enjoy the serenity of the atmosphere. Don't forget to sit by the fields and listen to the crops speak to you. Don't forget to look up at the sky, and take a deep breath of fresh air from the land.

VR is an abbreviation for Village Rockstars. It is also one for Virtual Reality. Rima Das gets the things right to transport you to her land, and see what it has got.

Verdict: Go for this, and you'll see the whole village of Chhaygaon breathe to life and welcome you with open arms.


3.25 5 ( 3.25 / 5.0 )




Village Rockstars (aka) Village Rock Stars

Village Rockstars (aka) Village Rock Stars is a Assamese movie. Bhanita Das are part of the cast of Village Rockstars (aka) Village Rock Stars. The movie is directed by Rima Das. Production by Rima Das, cinematography by Rima Das, editing by Rima Das.