Directed by: Anamika Basumatary, Nishant Balgovind
Written by: Anamika Basumatary, Nishant Balgovind
Time for a history lesson. A rather long history lesson, taking into account that Basumatary's and Balgovind's captivating documentary Boro: Fight for Identity has a duration of two hours and forty minutes. And within that period, this magnificent project has a great deal to offer.
The film focuses on the Boro, who are the largest tribe of the state of Assam, located in north-eastern India. Today the Boro mainly inhabit Bodoland Territorial Region, which became an autonomous administrative territory following several peace agreements. The documentary explores the history of this tribe right from its earliest beginnings thousands of years ago and analyses in great detail how they evolved over the centuries and finally how they had to struggle with the Indian government in order to be who they are now, an independent community.
According to Basumatary it took over six years to complete the research for this documentary, which was done by acquiring information from countless of books, archives, newspapers, records and interviews. And the result of all this hard work was definitely worth it. Separated in chapters, the documentary consists mainly of relevant news footage, interviews with experts and witnesses, scenes that depict Boro traditions and culture such as ritual dancing, clothing and food. There are also sequences that involve computer animation, which are used to describe historical events that took place centuries ago and they are very well designed and add significant value. All these elements are brilliantly edited together and with the addition of the informative narration, they provide the audience with a very deep insight into the Boro community, even if they have never heard of them before.
Apart from the history and the struggles of the Boro for independence, viewers will also get an understanding of how beautiful and fascinating these people are. There is plenty of footage of their traditional dances, ceremonies, and interesting, well-designed clothing and the soundtrack contains mesmerising songs that are relevant to their culture.
Boro: Fight for Identity is a piece of work that deserves lots of praise and recognition and offers a very educational and fascinating experience.