Kumaré

Vikram Gandhi, USA, 2011, color, HDcam, 84'
Synopsis

Filmmaker Vikram Gandhi is a young East Coast American from an Indian family. He is astonished by the success of Eastern-style gurus in the wealthiest parts of the world. As an experiment, Gandhi learns the tricks of the yoga trade, dresses himself as a guru, lets his beard grow, adopts a thick accent, and sets off under the name Kumaré to the desert city of Phoenix, Arizona. There, he quickly gathers a group of followers around him, whom he teaches to meditate to catchphrases such as "Be all that you can be." The tone of Kumaré remains lighthearted throughout. Despite taking his disciples for a ride, much in the style of Sacha Baron Cohen's character Borat, he always treats them with kindness and sympathy. Gandhi/Kumaré stitches the narrative together with a matter-of-fact commentary recorded after the event, never disclosing to what extent he became wrapped up in his role as wise spiritual Indian leader. In a world Kumaré conceives as pure illusion and a product of our inner eye, the filmmaker raises the question of whether the part he plays means he has become illusion incarnate. And this triggers the question in the viewer's mind of whether what is apparently a fake documentary actually hides a deeper truth.

IDFA relocates festival heart to Amstel September 16, 2014 | This year’s IDFA will for the first time be focused around the Amstel river. The main festival locations Pathé Tuschinski, Pathé de Munt, EYE and De Brakke Grond remain, but the festival buzz will move to Café de Jaren and Café Swych on Amsterdam’s Nieuwe Doelenstraat.
IDFA to present themed program on The Female Gaze September 9, 2014 | During the upcoming festival, IDFA will present a themed program on the role of women in documentary called The Female Gaze. Fifteen leading international female directors, including Pirjo Honkasalo, Barbara Kopple and Kim Longinotto, have put together a program of old and new documentaries by themselves and other female directors.
IDFA Bertha Fund introduces European program September 1, 2014 | The IDFA Bertha Fund is launching a new program: IDFA Bertha Fund – Europe. The new program will support the production and distribution of documentaries realized through co-productions between European producers and producers from developing countries.

Twitter

IDFAindustry @IDFAindustry 3 days ago
The Kids & Docs workshop started this morning! Participants will develop a plan for a short kid' doc. @Mediafonds http://t.co/jcfpXsb3kq
Open
IDFAindustry @IDFAindustry 5 days ago
IDFA's festival heart will move from the Rembrandt square to the Amstel river for the 2014 edition: http://t.co/1B03PNxxs5
Open
VPRO Oxfam Novib de Volkskrant BankGiro Loterij SNS Reaal