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Official poster of Village Rockstars
|Directed by||Rima Das|
|Produced by||Rima Das|
|Written by||Rima Das|
|Edited by||Rima Das|
|Distributed by||Flying River Films|
|9 September 2017 (TIFF)|
28th September 2018
|Language||Kamrupi dialect, Assamese language|
|Box office||₹80 lakh (US$110,000)|
Village Rockstars is a 2017 Indian Kamrupi Assamese language coming-of-age film written, edited, co-produced, and directed by Rima Das, who is a self-taught filmmaker. The film premiered at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). More significantly, the film grabbed the Best Feature Film ‘Swarna Kamal’ award at the 65th National Film Awards, which were declared at New Delhi on 13 April 2018. Village Rockstars also won awards in three other categories: Best Child Artist, Best Location Sound Recordist and Best Editing. The film was selected as India's official entry to the 91st Academy Awards, but it was not nominated for top nine films from 87.
Dhunu is the protagonist amidst a group of real village rock stars. Growing up in hardship, she cherished aspiration of having her own rock band. Her life although engulfed by hostile natural calamities doesn't bar her from dreaming of owning a real guitar !
Ten-year-old Dhunu (Bhanita Das) lives in Kalardiya village near Chaygaon in Assam, India with her widowed mother (Basanti Das) and elder brother Manabendra (Manabendra Das). While helping her mother sell snacks at a local event, she becomes mesmerized by a band that's performing there. The part that's so delightfully hokey: the boys belt out their hits with musical instruments made of Styrofoam. She proceeds to copy them, carving a guitar Jimi Hendrix would be proud of.
Impressionable and tenacious at the same time, Dhunu reads a comic book and decides she wants to form a band playing real instruments. Rupee by rupee, she begins to save for the guitar. She reads an article in a scrap newspaper and decides that positive thinking can make the possession of the guitar materialize. But as floods destroy the family's crops, Dhunu must choose her priorities. The whole premise sounds endearingly naive, yet Dhunu's brilliance in everything she does transforms the cheesy bromides into a rallying cry for hope and self-reliance.
Village Rockstars won the Film Critics Circle of India Award for the Best Indian Film of 2017. Jury member Dalton L declared it "a milestone film of sorts", adding, "Village Rockstars epitomises the trials and tribulations, and heralds the coming of age, of a filmmaker, of her protagonist, and of the indie film movement in India". Jury member Priyanka Dasgupta said, "Rima Das’ film is a lyrical montage of life and times in contemporary rural India. It subtly draws attention to complex gender issues – sometimes even subverting the conventional gender norms – without ever getting preachy. Bhanita Das – the pint-sized fiery ball of lovable energy – is endearingly natural. But just when one fears that the film might become schmaltzy, the film-maker takes control. The lens speaks volumes, sometimes conveying more than the dialogues. Such a work by a first-time director holds a lot of promise for Indian cinema". Jury member Premchand called it "a women’s journey into the heart of the matter." Saibal Chatterjee, a founder member of the Society, gave the film a five-star rating, and says in his review, "A masterwork is usually the result of strict adherence to artistic and functional rules. Village Rockstars respects none: it dons a raw, innocent cloak and exudes a degree of purity that deliberate craft can never bestow on a film... The film stands for something that is always under threat: the courage to ignore the reality that life is exceedingly difficult for cinema that is made on the margins of a giant production machinery and recognize that there always are ways out for those who revel in battling the odds, no matter how daunting, and overcoming them." 
Maggie Lee says in her review for Variety, "By focusing on tween characters, the picture evokes that freewheeling stage when gender roles are still blurry in the friendships between boys and girls. Then as suddenly as a monsoon, Dhunu’s first period arrives. The rituals held to initiate her into womanhood — making her wear a sari, segregating her from the boys — are seen as attempts to enforce her otherness."  Deborah Young in the Hollywood Reporter says, "Village Rockstars’ storytelling is so offhand it borders on documentary. The action follows natural rhythms, the seasons, biology." On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film currently holds an approval rating of 90% based on 10 reviews, with an average rating of 7.8/10.
|Award||Date of ceremony[a]||Category||Recipient(s) and nominee(s)||Result||Ref.|
|Academy Awards||February 24, 2019||Best Foreign Language Film||India's official entry||Not nominated|||
|National Film Awards||April 13, 2018||Best Feature Film||Rima Das||Won|||
|Best Child Artist||Bhanita Das||Won|
|Best Location Sound Recordist||Mallika Das||Won|
|Best Editing||Rima Das||Won|
|Jio MAMI Film Festival 2017||October 18, 2018||Golden Gateway award for best film in India Gold category||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Oxfam Best Film for Gender Equality award||Village Rockstars||Won|
|Young Critics Choice award||Village Rockstars||Won|
|Cork Film Festival||November 11, 2017||Gradam Spiorad Na Féile / Spirit of the Festival Award||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Cairo International Film Festival||November 21, 2017||Best Artistic Contribution from the International Critic's Week competition||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Olympia International Film Festival for Children & Young people||November 26, 2017||Best Actress||Bhanita Das||Won|||
|Best Director||Rima Das||Won|||
|Special Jury prize||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Smile International Film Festival for Children & Youth||December 17, 2017||Best Children's Film||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Best Actor||Bhanita Das||Won|||
|Cine Junior Film Festival, France 2018||January 1, 2018||Grand Prix (Best Film)||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Muestra de Cine Lanzarote 2017, Spain||May 18, 2017||Best Young Film||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles||April 15, 2018||Grand Jury Prize for Best Feature||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Buenos Aires Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente, Argentina 2018||April 22, 2018||SIGNIS Prize||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Prag Cine Awards 2018||May 27, 2018||Best Film||Village Rockstars||Won|||
|Best Actor (Female)||Bhanita Das||Won|
|Best Editing||Rima Das||Won|
|Best Sound Designer||Amrit Pritam||Won|
|Jury's Special Mention||Basanti Das||Won|
|7th Assam state Film Award and Festival||July 29, 2018||Kamal Narayan Choudhry Award for Best Director||Rima Das||Won|
|Best Sound Design||Amrit Pritam||Won|
|Best Debut Actress||Bhanita Das||Won|
|Nalin Dowerah Award for Best Cinematography||Rima Das||Won|
|3rd BRICS film festival||July 27, 2018||Best Actress||Bhanita Das||Won|
|Special Jury Award||Village Rockstars||Won|