Bengali indie film “Gandu” (Asshole) directed by Q (formerly known as Kaushik Mukherjee) has taken the world by storm since its award-winning international premiere at New York’s South Asian International Film Festival in 2010, yet managed a public screening in India only last year at the Osian Film Festival.
The film, which seems designed to batter the Indian censor board with its liberal use of frontal male and female nudity, profanity and drug use, has gained a cult following for its edgy portrayal of the eponymous protagonist and wannabe rapper, who filches money from the client having paid sex with his mother, to fuel a trip with his pal, a heroin-addicted rickshaw-puller. Needless to say, the director enjoys a rep for explosive social commentary.
If you were one of the terribly disappointed viewers at Mumbai’s Naya Cinema festival last July when the film’s slot at a preview theatre exempted from censorship was cancelled because the screening was denied police protection; or have been part of the frequent conversations starting with “How do I get my hands on Gandu?,” or are embittered that the closest you’ve come to the film is watching Q rap with the film’s spinoff band Gandu Circus, rejoice and head over to iCinema, which now has the movie up for download.
iCinema’s claim to fame is the first live streaming of a Hindu wedding and the broadcast of a string of films in Indian languages. Brave the ads to watch the free version on the L3 player (also available for download) or pay the minimal screening amount, which ranges from $0.5 for a single view to $5 for a purchase.
Q requested support for the download in a Facebook post saying, “It is important that we prove to the market that indie films are viable. This is crucial to the overall impact that we make on the distribution system.”
The director also announced that plans for the release of “Tasher Desh” (Land of Cards) are underway; the adaptation of Rabindranath Tagore’s play co-directed by Anurag Kashyap and also featuring his long-standing collaborator and award-winning actress-girlfriend Rii Sen, premiered at the Rome International Film Festival last November.