"Panikar and Jagushte, from Star Hopper, reason that as queer artists, they’re keen on showcasing stories of queer and marginalised art-makers from a gaze that captures the complexity of their lives. "While this isn’t, strictly speaking, a queer film, it is a story of and by queer folks, and we need to see more and more of that in the public discourse," they sign off".
Alex Matraxia, Otherness Archive
"Confronting the normative manner in which sexuality is discussed in Indian culture, Bodies Of Desire established desire as world-making, world-protecting - as a space in which we reach not just for nearby bodies but for a future which if we permit ourselves to imagine, can be located in the present."
"Sitting at the confluence of identity, attachment, belonging, and more, After So Long // बरसों बाद is magic in the form of visual poetry. Varsha’s wondrous vision gives the poetry body, and allows it to be its own being."
Srishti Berry, Gaysi
"The biggest question that Bodies of Desire answers, is, that intimacy is not limited to sex; sex is a secondary part of intimacy. One does not even have to be fully naked to experience an overwhelming sense of intimacy. One does not even have to be with someone to find intimacy and desire burning in their core."
Romita Roy, The Lipstick Politico
"Queer or marginalised filmmakers and their stories are often boxed in what we call the ‘niche’. we are working towards creating an alternative industry where queer, underrepresented works become the prowess of contemporary Indian culture. And slowly you shift your gaze from what is ‘niche’ to what can be mainstream."- Asawari Jagushte, the producer behind Bodies of Desire.
"It’s a really beautiful film that captures an honest sense of longing between companions, the raw and honest visuals a result of the filmmaker's decision to cast non-actors who then went through a series of intimacy workshops to become comfortable in front of the camera."
Vanya Lochan, Homegrown
"The film has been shortlisted in one of the world’s most prestigious, Berlin Commercial 2020’s Cultural Impact category. What makes Bodies of Desire beautiful is the fact that it is intimate yet never intrusive. It flows subtly yet hits right in the deepest core of the heart. A solemn play of light, shadow, and all that’s there in between, this one-of-its-kind film reintroduces us to ourselves as we find ourselves enveloped in memories evoked by the slight touches, the nimble kisses, and the tight yet freeing embraces."
Matt Grobar, Deadline
“Activating at some of our creators’ and audiences’ venue favorites like the DGA, Hollywood Forever, the Orpheum and REDCAT in DTLA, we hope brings all the ‘feels’ everyone is ready for. We can’t wait for everyone to see the festival we have curated – I believe the slate of programming not only meets the moment but distinctly presents the work of some of the most talent contemporaries in queer cinema.
- Outfest Executive Director, Damien S. Navarro."
Bi Collective's Podcast
"Suryatapa and Navdeep from the Bi Collective Delhi talk to Varsha Panikar about their short film Bodies of Desire as part of British Council's Five Films for Freedom.
We need to build more intersectional spaces where more people from the LGBTQIA++ community are given means and resources to reclaim their narrative freely and safely. So children and young adults that are from the community aren’t growing up without seeing a single character that they can relate to, says Varsha."
Zoya Rebelo, Herald Goa
"The 23-minute film looks beyond traditional representation and seeks to examine the inner lives of those less thought of so that it might hold up a mirror to society. With a feeling that is ancient, the treatment of the film is contemporary. “I hope we have managed to create a world that looks through the lensof the oppressed, in a language that is personal to us. And I hopet he film raises the same emotions that we felt while making it,” Asawari states.
"Excited about an Indian film being part of the line-up this year, Kennedy added, "It will take the perspective of the Indian LGBTIQ+ individuals to global audiences and connect them with people across borders. The range of emotions across this year’s line-up underlines the need for more love and togetherness in the world."