Movie reviewsSouth Asia


Well, it’s been a while since I’ve sat down and watched a movie. Any movie. However, as Indokult is dedicated not only to the realm of Asian music, but also of Asian movies (and other aspects forming the culture of Asia), with a renewed strength I have embarked on the journey to bring to your attention some worthy examples of the Asian cinematic art. And I am pretty sure we’re gonna encounter also some less-then worthy ones as well, but how can we know, right?

Today we’re gonna to check a movie from India, and I’ll confess without any hesitation than my knowledge of Indian cinema is severely lacking. That despite the fact that I was – and still am – an avid reader of Tim Paxton’s articles dedicated to Indian horror movies in the magazines MONSTER! and WENG’S CHOP.

Although I am not totally clueless – there are quite a few Indian movies available on Netflix and Youtube, so obviously, I know such cinematic hits like Baahubali or Rocky Handsome and a few others. Still, taking into consideration the sheer volume of movies produced by Bollywood – I should go to a naughty corner. Shame on me.

Truth also is, I haven’t binged movies as I’d used to. Not that I don’t want to, or I’ve somehow lost my appetite for cinematic experiences, quite the contrary! However – as we all know – the time is a scarce and valuable commodity and sometimes you just can’t get what you want. Mick Jagger knows a thing or two about it.

Therefore, I was glad I have stumbled upon TUMBBAD, the 2018 movie directed by the trio of Indian directors – Rahi Anil Barve, Anand Gandhi and Adesh Prasad and staring Sohum Shah as the main character, Vinayak Rao.

Tumbbad is sometimes classed as a horror movie, a designation not completely correct. It’s true there are some mythological/fantasy features involved and a few scary moments – as a whole, though, the movie is a tale about the human greed and the its consequences.

Tumbbad creature
OK, this was quite scary.

In the movie we follow the life of Vinayak Rao, from his childhood to the adult life (which happens in the first half of the 20th century) and we witness his encounter with the mythological creature called Hastar. From this Indian god you can extract some nice gold coins – but you have to be very, very careful, as the mistake is a fatal one.

Tumbbad Hathar
Hastar…yeah, one scary creature.

The movie is dark and tragic, although not with an end which quite surprised me (but I was satisfied with it). As it’s almost customary in Indian cinema, we can’t miss a few songs, but I am quite glad the creators left out all dance numbers, so prevalent in Indian cinema. Although I have no problem with them, especially modern dance choreographies are very well done.

Without spoiling the story….I’ve watched the movie in two parts (due to time constraints) – the first part was almost the whole movie except the last 15 minutes. And I didn’t like the movie much at first, but those last 15 minutes changed my overal rating. Yes, the movie is too long – which is also something you can encounter with Indian cinema – and I think I am not alone of the opinion that some things could be left out without hurting the overall story.

Be it as it is – would I recommend Tumbbad? Yes, I would. Great atmosphere and great visuals plus a story from the culture so different from the Western one.


Rudolf Schütz

The creative mind behind the,a fervent connoisseur of cultural treasures, with an unwavering passion for Asian and Indonesian movies and music. He is a true aficionado, driven by a desire to unearth hidden gems and shed light on the often-overlooked. From the grand stages of mainstream performances to the gritty underground scenes, Rudolf is equally at home, recognizing that every note and frame tells a unique tale. As a cultural enthusiast, Rudolf is not just an observer but a storyteller in their own right. Through his insights, analyses, and reviews, he shares the captivating narratives that ripple through Asia's music and movie scenes. Whether it's a haunting melody that resonates from Indonesia's hidden corners or a cinematic masterpiece that transports you across time, Rudolf is your trusted guide to the captivating world of cultural expressions.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Check Also
Back to top button