Best of short films shortlisted from entries received for HFF 2024. The selection of shorts illuminates a cross-section of the lives and landscapes of the people of different cultures of India. With inputs from cinema critic Dr. Saptarshi Chaudhuri and film scholar Dr. Vebhuti Duggal. 

Malwa Khushan ( Hindi/ 2023/  20 mins) Dirs. Preeti Kanungo, Sourav Yadav. Cast :  Priyanshi Bharti, Prakrati Chauhan. Set in rural India, it's a coming of age story of two sisters Malwa and Khushan exploring and experiencing sexuality and attraction in their adolescent years. Living with their grandmother, Khushan always looks up to Malwa for her outspoken nature and courage. Soon a new girl arrives in Khushan's class and she starts developing feelings for her.

Nothing Grows Under The Pine Trees (Garhwali/  2024/  32 mins) Dir. Sachin Rana. Cast: Soni Rana, Aakriti Rana, Rajendra Singh Rana, Deweshwari Rana (All non actors). Marriage begins to spool the fates of two sisters as their family begins to arrange for one. Lost in her kaleidoscopic imagination, the younger sister comes to believe that she is being married. On the other hand, the elder sister, the one being married, knows what this marriage is— a remedy for crossing the lines drawn by society and concocted by the fear of social boycott. From the hills of Uttarakhand comes this story of two sisters' destiny tied to their society, a sliver of the ensuing saga of a people torn by prejudice disguised as tradition.

Gahvara(Hindi/ 2023/ 28 mins) Dir. Tariq Mohammad. Cast: Himansh Kohli, Flora Bose, Neeraj Sood, Harvinder Kaur, Priyanka Verma, Saria Iqbal. To fulfill his grandmother’s last wish Farhan makes a new funeral bier (gahvara) to take her body to the burial ground. But the events that happen thereafter change Farhan's life and perspective.


Yes Sir (Hindi/ 2023/ 20 mins) Dir. Mudit Singhal. Cast: Mukesh Bhatt, Sonu Anand, Vikas Prasad Somani, Himanshu Rawat, Vineet Ahuja. Ramnarayan Tiwari, a Brahmin , is an office peon in a public sector undertaking, where recently, a Dalit has risen to become a big officer. Tiwari resents this. The officer’s bathroom’s drain has choked. The story is about how this reverse hierarchical order, and Tiwari’s caste prejudice towards the officer, counterbalance each other to solve the problem of the choked drain.


Odhani ( Hindi, Bhojpuri/ 24 mins) Dir. Anand Raj. Cast : Vivek Singh, Anand Raj, Nisha Gupta, Ghanshyam Yadav, Aarohi Kanojia, Ajeet Pratap Singh, Priya Gupta. A fictional story which shows the pain of girls in rural areas, how they get molested by boys. In this film a lower middle class family  hope that their daughter will study and become an officer. On the other hand, the girl is upset with two boys who always stalk her and  follow her when she goes to school. What will she do? How will she get rid of them?  

Vamoose (Telugu/ 2024/ 15 mins) Dir. A D Prem Kumar. Cast : Nagarajan, Prem MPS.A detective checking up on a lead for a missing persons case brings him to the person who can be the last one to be questioned.

Mom- Beti ( Hindi/2023/ 5 mins) Dir. Reshma Ramachandran .Cast : Priya Haloli, Preeti Haloli. An escalating fight between a mother and daughter. 


251( Bengali/ Unreleased/ 16 mins) Dir. Bauddhayan Mukherji. As Covid spreads during the first wave, many horror stories unfold in India – some of them in the inglorious send offs. Based on true events, 251 is the touching story of a son who is asked to come over to a makeshift crematorium to bid his dead mother the final goodbye. What unfolds is a heart wrenching saga of human endurance and the never-ending trauma that we all went through.

Nirjara ( 2023/ English & Hindi/ 7 mins ) Dir. Gaurav Patil. A short film exploring the hierarchy in religious practices and Indian family structure. Aniket and Venkat, two brothers are at the Varanasi ghat to perform the last rites of their deceased mother. Aniket, the younger, has spent his entire life in the shadow of his older brother who is sought as the 'man' after their father. Always ahead of him -even now, as the older son performs the last rite rituals of their mother according to the Hindu tradition. Throughout the film Aniket questions his position as a son and challenges his relationship with his brother.