Malegaon, a small town tucked away near the heart of India geographically, is wrought with communal tension and economic depression. To escape the harsh reality of their world, its people seek refuge in the fantastical world of cinema.
This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what's now showing
Something that's always bothered me about how people approach the film industries of nonwestern aestheticized "third world" countries like India is how they stay clear away from more commercial/mainstream films and instead go for recognized greats like Ray, etc when just separating Indian cinema into those categories is faulty ethnocentrism. SoM really makes a point to show how class shapes film culture in India.
This documentary captures the healing effects of cinema like no other film. A ragtag bunch of hobby-filmmakers with zero talent and infinite enthusiasm capture the nuances and pitfalls of the filmmaking with a simple profundity and more-than-a-few belly-laughs.
Both moving and filled with an infectious sense of fun, Supermen of Malegaon really lets the potential impact and meaning of popular film in people's lives hit home. Watching this amateur group from Malegaon create their own pop cinema is almost as cathartic to watch as it must be to do. Can't recommend this one enough (esp to that person in your life who takes auteurist film snobbery a little too seriously.)