Welcome to the Yorkshire Indian Film Festival (YIFF)

As we celebrate our 2nd year, we continue to showcase the best of new Indian and South Asian cinema, web series, and emerging filmmakers’ shorts, and build on last year’s exciting forays into XR and computer games. The festival will run from 27th June to 2nd July.

Before Nikkah (CC)+ Q&A (BSL)

15:00 | THU 27 JUNE |THE STUDIO
Set in London, Before Nikkah follows two British Pakistanis who go on a blind date, as they prepare for a prospective arranged marriage. Initially apprehensive, the date doesn’t start off well. However, fate conspires to keep the couple together for the whole day qnd as they get to know each other, their experience heralds some unexpected consequences. Paying homage to Richard Linklater’s Before Sunrise, Zafar’s film is a soulful and charming romantic comedy that will leave you falling in love with the two leads.

Dir: Haider Zafar |  Starring: Sasha Vadher, Aakash Shukal
Run time: 93 mins | Recommended Certificate: 18  |  Year: 2023 | Country: UK |  Language: English

Closed Captions and BSL-interpreted Q&A
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Sthal (A Match)

18:00 | THU 27 JUNE |HYDE PARK PICTUREHOUSE LEEDS
Jayant Digambar Somalkar’s feature debut chronicles the journey of a young woman striving for an education and a brighter future in a patriarchal society, where arranged marriage is presented as the only option for self-betterment. Sthal is a subtle yet implicitly powerful drama exploring the joys and tribulations of young people’s lives as they try to challenge the status quo. Winner of the NETPAC award at Toronto International Film Festival.

Dir: Jayant Digambar Somalkar |  Starring: Nandini Chikte, Taranath Khiratakar, Sangita Sonekar
Run time: 104 mins | Recommended Certificate: 18  |  Year: 2023 | Country: India |  Language: Marathi with English subtitles

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Queen of my Dreams + Q&A (BSL)

20:00 | THU 27 JUNE |THE STUDIO
In this colourful and song-soaked delight of a film, young Pakistani woman Azra lives an alternative lifestyle with her white female buddy in Toronto, which is worlds apart from her conservative Muslim mother’s traditional values. When her beloved father suddenly dies on a trip home to Pakistan, Azra finds herself on a flight to Karachi, where she discovers her Bollywood inspired connection to memories of childhood and the truth of her once liberal mother and father’s 1960s love marriage.

Dir: Fawzia Mirza |  Starring: Amrit Kaur, Hamza Haq, Nimra Bucha
Run time: 97 mins | Recommended Certificate: 18  |  Year: 2023 | Country: Canada, Pakistan |  Language: English, Urdu with English subtitles

BSL-interpreted Q&A
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Wakhri

17:00 | SAT 29 JUNE |HYDE PARK PICTUREHOUSE LEEDS
A young widowed school teacher in Pakistan becomes a viral sensation overnight, after she accidentally unleashes her unfiltered opinions on social media. Her newfound fame as an influencer, however, comes with its own challenges as she tries to navigate the archaic mindsets that pervade society – all while trying to raise her 10-year-old son as a single mother. Drawing inspiration from real life figures such as Qandeel Baloch (Pakistan’s first social media celebrity), Wakhri is an extraordinary and moving tale of a brave woman fighting against the odds to live life on her own terms.

Dir: Iram Parveen Bilal  |  Starring: Faryal Mehmood, Gulshan Majeed, Shees Sajjad Gul
Run time: 99 mins | Recommended Certificate: 18  |  Year: 2023 | Country: Pakistan, USA |  Language: Urdu with English Subtitles

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Mithya + Q&A (BSL)

17:00 | SUN 30 JUNE |HYDE PARK PICTUREHOUSE LEEDS
Mithun, an impressionable eleven-year-old boy struggling to come to terms with the loss of his parents, is sent back to his idyllic home village to live with his estranged family. As he tries to adapt to his new surroundings, with locals squabbling over his custody, he learns of secrets that will change his life forever. Grounded by an extraordinary central performance from young actor Athish Shetty, Sumanth Bhat’s debut feature is a delicate coming-of-age tale exploring themes of loss and acceptance.

Dir: Sumanth Bhat |  Starring: Athish Shetty, Prakash Thuminad, Roopa Varkady
Run time: 98 mins | Recommended Certificate: 18  |  Year: 2023 | Country: India |  Language: Kannada with English subtitles

BSL-interpreted Q&A
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Tight: The World of Indian Bodybuilding + Q&A

18:00 | TUE 2 JULY |HYDE PARK PICTUREHOUSE LEEDS
Every muscle is pumped to perfection in this uplifting documentary. It follows young bodybuilder Aji, from South India, in his preparations to take on the northern musclemen and be crowned Mr India. Through Aji’s against-the-grain quest we witness a rapidly changing Indian society and the rise of this increasingly popular sport, where brotherhood and diversity are celebrated, and India’s first women bodybuilders are making an impact. The well-oiled biceps on show will inspire you to put down the parathas and head to the gym!

Dir: Elliott Gonzo
Run time: 77 mins | Recommended Certificate: 18  |  Year: 2023 | Country: UK |  Language: English and Tamil with English subtitles

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