Archive of films Umrika / Umrika
2015, 102 min
Section: Official Selection - Out of Competition
Involving numerous plotlines set in 1980s India, Umrika is a story that attempts to emotively depict the complex business of growing up. At the same time the director demonstrates his inventiveness in incorporating a light-hearted commentary on the Indian myth known as America (Umrika). Winner of the Audience Award at Sundance in 2015.
A small village lost in the mountains of North India comes to life whenever young Udai sends a letter from “Umrika” along with copious newspaper cuttings. His brother Rama was still a child when Udai set out for the USA to find his fortune. Many years pass and, one day, the letters stop coming, so Rama decides to go in search of his brother. In Bombay he gets to the root of the mystery, having in the process various experiences which bring him closer to adulthood. The journey to find his brother ultimately becomes a quest to fulfil his own dream. The narrative overwhelms the viewer with the kind of epic dimension absent from European films – we sense a colourful life story behind every motif. The director is concise in his portrayal, he regards his characters with true empathy and with a sense of the dramatic, yet he leaves sufficient room for comic insight and an imaginative, witty commentary on the huge cultural differences between India and the USA. All this is lightly sprinkled with Bollywood sentiment, buoyed up by nostalgia for 1980s Indian pop tunes influenced by America.
About the director
Prashant Nair (Chandigarh, India) is a director, screenwriter and producer. He was born to Malayali parents and grew up in Europe, Asia and Africa. Before settling as a filmmaker in Mumbai he worked in Paris, Prague, Berlin and New York. He took a course in directing and editing at NYU which gave him essential grounding and experience, yet he states he was most influenced by the many countries he visited and their various cultures, and by the making of his first film. He began with the short romantic comedy Max & Helena (2009), which was followed by the critically acclaimed feature Delhi in a Day (2011) where, through the eyes of a young Brit, we witness the changes major economic growth has brought India over the last two decades. Nair enjoys introducing humour to weighty themes, which also applies to Umrika, winner of the Audience Award at Sundance in 2015.
About the film
|Section:||Official Selection - Out of Competition|
|Dir. of Photography:||Petra Korner|
|Editor:||Xavier Box, Patricia Rommel|
|Art Director:||Rakesh Yadav|
|Producer:||Swati Shetty, Manish Mundra|
|Production:||Samosa Stories Entertainment Pvt. Ltd.|
|Cast:||Suraj Sharma, Tony Revolori, Smita Tambe, Adil Hussain, Rajesh Tailang, Prateik Babbar|
|Sales:||Beta Cinema GmbH|
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