India In a Day

The film ‘India in a Day’ (2016) is a crowdsourced documentary directed by Richie Mehta which shows footage shot by millions of people in India on October 10th, 2015. The vlog style film aims to create a snapshot of the country through the varied lived experiences of its citizens. 

Out of all the film’s we have watched this session, India in a Day was my favourite. The quick, montage style of the film was so engaging. What stood out to me the most was the confronting reality of the stark contrast between certain lifestyles in India. The footage showed some people spent their days farming on their peaceful, private land, some wealthy people spent their mornings doing yoga in the park, while many were living in cramped slums and navigating the crowded, polluted city. 

The film showcases the role Technology has played in transforming communities in India, and celebrates the spread of internet access and wi-fi coverage. After all – as an audience we were only able to connect with the people in India thanks to mobile phones and the internet, which made the 16,000 submissions possible. 

The contrast in lifestyles is seen again in the film however, through the disparity in access to technology. Some people in India are still using an ox and cart for transportation, while there are tuk tuk drivers with high tech modifications that support phone chargers and wifi for passengers. Mind blowing!

One participant in the film is talking about how he has to farm his land the old school way without access to weather reports via the internet and says “this generation does not want to do this kind of work. This generation wants immediate results.” 

This really struck a chord with me – not to generalise an entire generation, but with access to the world at our fingertips, you can’t deny that our generation is addicted to instant gratification. 

This made me start to think; while technology can empower individuals, it is a powerful tool that can also become addictive and damaging. 

References:

Hunter. A 2016, ‘India In A Day: Sheffield Doc/Fest Review,’ [online] Screen Daily, Available at: <https://www.screendaily.com/reviews/india-in-a-day-sheffield-doc/fest-review/5104777.article>. 

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