Village Rockstars (2017)


“Grandpa, if I want something will I get it?”


Language: Assamese.

Director:  Rima Das.

Writers: Rima Das.

Cast: Bhanita Das, Basanti Das, Boloram Das.

Genre: Drama.

Imdb: Village Rockstars (2017)

Streaming on Netflix.


“Grandpa, if I want something will I get it?”

“If your willpower is strong, if you’re determined to achieve it and if you keep working towards it, you will definitely get it. Why won’t you?” 


Village Rockstars is a movie that lacks contemporary technology, trained cast, budget but it has a soul, a powerful one – the vision of Rima Das who wrote, captured, produced and directed it.

 The coming-of-age movie revolves around Dhunu (Bhanita Das), the daughter of a widow (Basanti Das), a tomboy who doesn’t let herself hindered by the societal norms and dreams of creating a rock band of her own with her neighbourhood friends. A lot happens beneath all these and for me, it is a story about hope and dream which cleverly breaks many stereotypes.

 The aforementioned absentees transparently diminish the quality of the cinema but concurrently increment the overall beauty. The absence of budget and technology along with a trained cast and crew was perceptible in the beginning but it didn’t inhibit me from immersing into the film as Rima Das unleashed her masterly storytelling. It was almost on the brink of being sentimental at times but she balanced it perfectly. This film breaks this notion that you need a budget and a crew for a film but all you need is vision and determination. As Rima Das said –

 “I shot this film without any crew and the cast of the film wasn’t trained in acting, so the process to make this film was hard and challenging, but I think it is possible if you have belief in yourself.”

 The cinematography using a Canon 5D and one lens is worth noticing. How she conveyed information using static shots is intriguing, she was able to render the predicaments, the lifestyle and the emotions just by placing the camera on a tripod. There are shots in this film where nothing happens, so stagnant, but it somehow has this essence that makes it more aesthetic. Rima Das exploited the only technology in her hands and managed to bring life to the people and the place. Fucking beautiful is what it is.

 The incompetence of the cast is evident because of the lack of training and refinement but you don’t really care as the movie unfolds. The relation between the mother and daughter did move me, it felt pure and real. Bhanita Das was really good, she felt amateurish at the beginning and as 4 years elapsed there were some serious improvements. She brought animation to this character-driven cinema. She and her friends with their playfulness and mischiefs made me nostalgic and emotional. 

The regressive society is a cliche nowadays in the movies and most of them convey the intended message perfectly, but for me, only a few lingers and this is one of them. It’s not just a film about breaking societal norms and stereotypes, it’s about hopes and dreams and Rima Das did a splendid job incorporating all. It’s beautiful, simple and powerful, I loved it. Village Rockstars is nothing but a poem that is visual.

Verdict: 6/7 Stars.



  • Official submission of India for the ‘Best Foreign Language Film’ category of the 91st Academy Awards in 2019.

  • The characters in the film performed are not trained..they are usual common folks of villages.

  • The whole film was shot on Canon digital handheld Camera and edited on a laptop.

  • The film premiered at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

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Into Books, Comics, Games, Cinemas, Music, and Science. You can follow him on Instagram @xx.wrox.

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