Director Lijo Jose Pellissery’s Malayalam-language independent action feature Jallikattu (2019) has been selected as India’s official submission for the Best International Feature Film language category at the 93rd Academy Awards. Chosen out of 27 Indian films in the run to Oscars 2021, Jallikattu is based on S Hareesh’s short story Maoist. Hareesh has also written the screenplay along with R Jayakumar.
The film’s premiere was held in September 2019 at the Toronto International Film Festival where it had received widespread critical acclaim. It was later released in Kerala on 04 October 2019.
Jallikattu, which proposes that “even now, with us here, this place belongs to animals,” is a Dadaist take on the story of a tamed buffalo that breaks loose on the eve of its scheduled slaughter and creates havoc all over the village in Kerala.
The Indian Express quotes filmmaker Rahul Rawail, Chairman, Jury Board, Film Federation of India who, talking about the selection, told reporters in an online press conference, “It is a film that really brings out the raw problems which are there in human beings, that is we are worse than animals.” Rawail added, “The emotions that came up really moved all of us. We felt that this is a unique ensemble of characters and locations.”
Watch the trailer of the film here:
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