IFFI 53 to celebrate 50 glorious years of Manipuri Cinema

Mumbai: Manipur- the ‘ Jewel city of India’, one of the eight sisters of North East will be the torch bearer for promotion of films from North East India at the 53rd edition of International Film Festival of India (IFFI).

To mark the golden jubilee of Manipuri cinema, IFFI 53-Asia’s oldest film festival – will showcase Five Feature and five Non-Feature films, curated by Manipur State Film Development Society under Indian Panorama. Each year 9th April has been celebrated as the birth of Manipuri cinema since the first Manipuri feature film was released on 9th April 1972 named ‘Matamgi Manipur’, directed by Deb Kumar Bose.

With the screening of opening feature film Ishanaou directed by Padmashree award winning director Aribam Shyam Sharma, and Ratan Thiyam; The Man of Theater in Non-feature film section along with other films, the cinema enthusiast will get a taste of rich cultural heritage, fierce storytelling, dance, music, traditions and theaters from the state of Manipur.

Manipuri film pioneers like Aribam Shyam Sharma, Oken Amakcham, Nirmala Chanu, Borun Thokchom, Romi Meitei among others will mark their presence to celebrate the 50 years of aesthetic brilliance of Manipuri cinema during the 53rd Edition of IFFI, Goa.


Directed by Aribam Shyam Sharma, the film Ishanou revolves around a female protagonist named Tampha, her husband and her children. Their lives disrupted by a sudden change when Tampha leaves her family in search of the Maibi Guru whom she thinks has chosen her to be the matriarchal religious sect of Maibis.

Brojendragee Luhongba

Directed by S.N. Chand Sajati, Brojendra, a doctor, married a girl of his mother’s choice but refused to look at her face even after marriage. Later, at a musical performance, he chances upon a beautiful girl and exchanges meaningful glances with her. He returned home guilt-ridden but he surprised to see the same girl as his wife.

Loktak Lairembee

A poetic gala, the film transports the meditative locals of Loktak Lake-the floating Lake of Manipur and accidental discovery of a weapon, a fisherman experiences a new confidence that soon lead into violence. Directed by Haobam Paban Kumar.

Matamgi Manipur

The film narrates the story of a middle-class family, Tonsa, a retired man and his three adult children. All are votaries of the new and old values in society and soon drift in different directions in their lives. The family seems to be destined to disintegrate, but then they begin to understand each other better and decide to live together happily thereafter. Directed by Deb Kumar Bose.

Phijigi Mani

Directed by Oinam Gautam, Yaiphabi – the women protagonist of Phijigi Mani -sets out on a mission to reunite her family. She tries to bridge the strained relationship between her parents and her brother, Sanajaoba who abandoned them. The film rides upon the past and present life of Yaiphabi evolving the socio-political scenario of Manipur.

Ratan Thiyam:The Man of Theater

The film captures life of Ratan Thiyam, Founder-Director of the Chorus Repertory Theater in Manipur. A renowned Manipuri poet, playwriter, painter, musician, theater guru. He worked as Chairperson of the prestigious National School of Drama from 2013-2017. He has also worked as Director of National School of Drama from 1987 to 1989. The movie is directed by Oken Amakcham and Nirmala Chanu.

Ilisha Amagi Mahao

Based on N. Kunjamohan’s National Akademy award winning short story, Chaoba struggles to feed his family by fishing in the river. After many days Chaoba and his son catch a Hilsa, joyous, came home to cook Hilsa curry but unable to do so as Chaoba has to sell his catch to buy some rice. The film is directed by Ningthauja Lancha.

Look at the Sky

Hai, a 40 year villager lives with his family in a remote village in Manipur oucasted by the villagers for not supporting the popular candidate during elections. Despite difficulties, Hai fights for his individual right to vote and elect his representatives. The film is to be directed by Ashok Veilou.

The Silent Poet

Directed by Borun Thokchom, the Film narrates the story of a poetic side of the activist Irom Sharmila Chanu, inside a highly guarded hospital prison in Manipur as she scribes her notebook while serving her sentence for ‘attempt to commit suicide.

The Tainted Minor

‘Chaoren’ the school going boy getting jealous of his friend Sana who is picked up by their football coach to be the team captain. Further, he indulged in a sinister act by giving Sana the chemical-sprayed vegetable to eat and Sana did not turned up the next day. The film is directed by Romi Meitei.