The film is headlined by Tovino Thomas, star of Netflix superhero film “Minnal Murali,” Nimisha Sajayan (“The Great Indian Kitchen”) and Indrans (“Home”). It explores events that occur when a window into a metaphysical realm that exists beyond human reality opens for an individual. The music is by two-time Grammy winner Ricky Kej.
Damodaran, known popularly as Dr. Biju, is well-known on the Indian and international film festival circuit. His films have been honored at India’s National Film Awards thrice. International accolades include “Veyilmarangal” (“Trees Under The Sun,” 2019) winning one of the top awards at Shanghai and “Painting Life” (2018) the Critics’ Award at Oporto.
“Adrishya Jalakangal” is produced by Ellanar Films (upcoming immigrant drama “Minimum”), Mythri Movie Makers (producers of one of the biggest 2021 Indian hits “Pushpa”) and Tovino Thomas Productions.
“ ‘Adrishya Jalakangal’ is an anti-war film with a layered structure and surrealistic treatment and is set in an imaginary space. The script is strongly socially driven and touches on many different aspects and elements of society related to the notion of war,” Damodaran told Variety. “The film intensely explores many emotions and situations like life, death, fear, hope, helplessness, love, hate, dreams, and sanity, particularly focusing on those neglected by a deeply divided and hierarchical society.”
Thomas told Variety: “Working with Dr. Biju felt long due more than anything else because we had had discussions for a movie together just before the pandemic struck. So now when it happened, I felt it was in the waiting – to be part of a Dr. Biju movie. I really enjoyed acting through the longer takes and his style of filmmaking. It is a balance I always try to keep in my portfolio; to be part of artsy cinema while the mainstream projects also happen. I try to make each of my characters unique, and this one probably has the most unique nature ever. It has also been a pleasure to work with production houses like Ellanar Films and Mythri Movie Makers which are continually trying to break the mold and bring something fresh to the audiences, which is something I have always strived for in my films.”
Producers include Radhika Lavu, Naveen Yerneni and Ravi Shankar with Jayashree Lakshminarayanan serving as associate producer.
“At Ellanar Films, we have always believed that the more personal a film, the more universal its appeal is. We are very proud to present a deeply meditative and experimental film that attempts to bridge the gap between fiction and reality, through a very honest examination of society, life and death in our times,” Lavu told Variety. “It is a great time for ‘glocal’ cinema to thrive, and we are excited to showcase a very Indian yet international film that has something unique and powerful to say to every individual across the world. Working with global talents, who have time and again transcended the biggest boundaries through their art, we are confident that this is a film that will act as a reflective lens and ‘window’ to curious minds and film lovers all across.”
“Adrishya Jalakangal” is aiming for an A-list festival slot in 2023.