A previous club session at the venue
Ardent bibliophiles of Mumbai might be aware of SwapBook, the first book club that opened in 2011. If you have ever wondered about the lack of a similar group for cinephiles, you are not alone. Vedant Naik, a resident from Prabhadevi had the same question a year ago. "Pravin Subramanian, who founded and has been running SwapBook since its early days, is a good friend. I joined the book club a year ago. I had pitched the idea to start a film club on similar lines back in January this year, and he liked it. That is how Off the Books came to be," Naik reveals.
But finding a suitable space for this idea became a challenge. "We wanted to keep it intimate. At that point, 3 Art House reached out to me since they were keen to collaborate. I checked out their space and immediately loved it. Those keen to watch out-of-the-box movies can join us. They will get regular updates about our meetings through our WhatsApp broadcasts," he mentions.
A full-time producer and account manager at a podcasting company, Naik knew that the films he wanted to showcase at the club should be a new experience for participants. "Before every screening, I carefully curate a list of global films that I have watched and single out one film that no one has heard of. The theme is usually obscure. It is like a secret society where people on the outside do not have any idea about the content that we watch." The club began its sessions from April 2.
Off the Books will be conducting its third screening this weekend and while Naik cannot reveal the name of the film, he assures that it falls in the absurdist cinema category, "When we put out an announcement, we publish a prompt for the film along with it; just before the screening begins, we reveal the name. During the intermission, we have a short discussion about our views on the film. A second discussion takes place after the film, to briefly decode it. This intimate network that has been formed is what makes these screenings special," Naik concludes.
On: June 4; 5 pm onwards
At: 3 Art House, Ajanta Building, Ram Krishna Nagar, Khar West
Log on to: insider.in
Cost: Rs 300