Caamfest

Indian American actor Danny Pudi stars opposite Emily Chang in “Babysplitters,” which screened May 11 at the 2019 CAAMFest. Another screening of the film is scheduled for May 15. (caamfest.com photo)

Indian American actor Danny Pudi’s film on the sharing economy, “Babysplitters,” and British Indian filmmaker Gurinder Chadha’s new film, “Blinded by the Light,” which is a story of courage, love, hope, family and the unique ability of music to lift the human spirit, are among the films that will be screened at the 2019 edition of CAAMFest, which will run through May 19 in the San Francisco Bay Area, Calif.

According to the film’s description on caamfest.org, “Blinded by the Light,” which will be screened May 16, tells the story of Javed (Viveik Kalra) a British teen of Pakistani descent, growing up in the town of Luton, England, in 1987. “Amidst the racial and economic turmoil of the times, he writes poetry as a means to escape the intolerance of his hometown and the inflexibility of his traditional father. But when a classmate introduces him to the music of Bruce Springsteen, Javed sees parallels to his working-class life in the powerful lyrics. As Javed discovers a cathartic outlet for his own pent-up dreams, he also begins to find the courage to express himself in his own unique voice.”

Indo-Canadian actor Prem Singh’s action-drama, “Tiger,” also features on the festival’s lineup. It will be screened May 14.

This year, CAAM has partnered with HBO and their annual Asian Pacific American Visionaries Competition, which showcases cinematic storytellers of Asian and Pacific Islander descent. Indian American filmmaker Nirav Bhakta’s short film, “Halwa,” which won the first prize at the competition, was screened May 11.

In the film, an Indian woman, played by Indian American actress Vijaya (Vee) Kumari, rekindles her relationship with a childhood sweetheart through Facebook messages, but her abusive husband takes notice. The film was co-directed by Indo-Canadian Gayatri Bajpai. (Read earlier India-West story here: https://bit.ly/2PRmW3U)

In “Babysplitters,” Jeff Penaras (Pudi) has mixed feelings about fatherhood. “When he and wife Sarah (Emily Chang) split the dinner tab with best friends Don and Taylor Small (Eddie Alfano and Maiara Walsh), the couples hatch a plan to spread the misery and share the love,” reads its official description on caamfest.org.

“Tiger” is a film about a Sikh Indian American boxer who is banned by the boxing commission for practicing his religious beliefs. Based on the life of boxer Pardeep Singh Nagra, this inspirational story, starring Singh, explores a boxer’s real fight outside of the ring for religious freedom and against racial profiling. (Singh spoke in detail about his role with India-West. Read his interview here: https://bit.ly/2Hfxibu)

For more information, visit caamfest.org

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