All India Rank: Varun Grover’s Directorial Debut Takes Center Stage as the First Indian Film to Close IFFR in Over 5 Decades

Featured & Cover All India Rank Varun Grover's Directorial Debut Takes Center Stage as the First Indian Film to Close IFFR in Over 5 Decades

Indian writer, lyricist, and comedian Varun Grover ventured into the realm of directing with his debut film ‘All India Rank,’ marking a significant milestone as it closed the International Film Festival Rotterdam 2024, making it the first Indian film to achieve this feat in 52 years.

The storyline of the movie unfolds in Kota, India, encapsulating the late 1990s era. It portrays the journey of 17-year-old Vivek, who is dispatched to a preparatory school to ready himself for the fiercely competitive IIT entrance examination, often dubbed as “the MIT of India.”

The narrative delves into the intensity and grim reality surrounding the arduous exam preparation process. Furthermore, it serves as a reflection of the socio-cultural landscape of India during the liberalization era of the 1990s.

Through a semi-autobiographical lens, Grover presents a poignant depiction of the lives of Indian adolescents and the societal pressures entwined with academic success. The film not only follows the protagonist’s personal odyssey but also delves into the dynamics between parental aspirations and individual dreams, resonating with a wide audience.

Boasting a stellar ensemble cast including Bodhisattva Sharma, Shashi Bhushan, and Samta Sudiksha, the film is backed by a proficient crew featuring cinematographer Archana Ghangrekar and editor Sanyukta Kaza.

Grover, acclaimed for his lyrical prowess, earned accolades such as the Best Lyricist award at the National Film Awards for his work in ‘Dum Laga Ke Haisha.’ His notable contributions extend to serving as the lyricist for acclaimed films like Anurag Kashyap’s ‘Gangs of Wasseypur’ I and II, the 2015 hit ‘Masaan,’ and the recent blockbuster ‘RRR,’ among others. Notably, he recently concluded a world tour of ‘Aisi Taisi Democracy,’ a satirical stand-up comedy show.

The film made its grand debut at the IFFR 2024 on February 6 and is slated for release in Indian cinemas on February 23.

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