Indian Short Film Documents A Village That Explores Skateboarding As A Means For Change

Indian Short Film Documents A Village That Explores Skateboarding As A Means For Change
Aayush Dudhiya & Divy Bhagia

We at Homegrown have constantly reiterated the power of street-culture in empowering and connecting people. Our own attempt at understanding the same has us seeking out individuals and creatives who are doing unique work in this space. Arts and culture often act as tools of change in areas of despondence and need. We bring to you a unique narrative of the village Janwaar, as brought to vision by filmmaker Divy Bhagya and Aayush Dudhiya, where a German woman changes the entire scape of the village by simply introducing the youth to explore skateboarding. This is a quintessential example of a culture impacting s place for the better.

Janwaar is a village in the heart of India witnessing and experiencing cultural change and Wheeled Wheels explores the existing cultural paradigm of the village while documenting the joy and change skateboarding brought to the village. Ulrike Reinhard, an individual from Germany is trying to bring the children of both the castes together through highly unusual and unique techniques. Since its conception three years ago, the skate-boarding park is now India’s largest and has played an instrumental role in fighting social issues like caste discrimination and inequality that have plagued our country for a long time. With everything that is happening in our country right now, a discourse that delves into the impact of such initiatives is even more important.

The film beautifully captures the essence of rural India. The villagers treat Ulrike like an almost alien invasion. Their skepticism comes from years of British rule and stories of dissent and injustice from the same. A young boy actually thought that she has come to make slaves of them. That just shows how bereft of humanity major parts of India are. Ulrike genuinely believes that the youth of the village will help change things and we can see the locals warm up to her and the events unfold as a skateboarding rink is introduced through the course of the documentary. The power of sensitivity and intent shines through in the film. One woman’s drive and resolution added positivity and purpose in so many lives. Beautiful things are happening in our country amid all the clutter, such rare instances are a breather and instill hope and positivity. It was a joy watching the narrative unfold and reveal seeds of progress sown by the simplest of gestures. Visuals of the children clutching onto their skateboards stay with me.

Durga at the skatepark in Janwaar

Directed and shot by Aayush Dudhiya and Divy Bhagia

Edited by: Aayush Dudhiya

Music by: Jerold Chu and Indrajeet Dixit

Sound Mixing: Matt Davies

Special Thanks to Ulrike Reinhard, Tim Tarrant, Rod Gray, Gary Mcintyre, Micele Caruso, Pratichi Sadavrati.

Images courtesy of Aayush Dudhiya and Divy Bhagia

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