There was a lot of outrage that RRR wasn’t chosen for India for International Feature, but they definitely made the right decision in choosing Last Film Show instead. This film a celebration of storytelling and cinema. And even more, it’s a film about chasing one’s passions and dreams.
The film takes place in the tiny village of Chalala in the Gujarat region of India, close to the border with Pakistan. It’s about a young boy named Samay who lives close to the Chalala train station where his father sells hot chai tea to passengers during a stopover. After watching a movie in the theatre with his family, his passion for films begin. His father considers movies to be rotten, so Samay skips school to watch films in the local theatre during the day.
Since he can’t afford to pay for the movie tickets, he’s been able to sneak into the theatre before, one day, eventually getting caught and thrown out by the owner. To his luck, he ends up meeting the projectionist, Fazal, who, in exchange for food, allows him to watch the films inside the projector room.
And there his passion for filmmaking begins.
Director Pan Nalin has created a masterclass film filled with childlike curiosity for the love of cinema that we all share. The look in the eyes of Samay as he watches every film possible inside that room is one of the most breathtaking moments to see this year. And his determination to make his dreams come true. No matter what.
Cinema has no boundaries. Stories need to be told. And everyone has a unique story. And it all has to begin from somewhere. For Samay, it began one afternoon in a small movie theatre where he discovered what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. And for creators like Samay, we as the public get to watch works of art like Last Film Show.