Abhay Kumar’s highly anticipated, ‘PLACEBO’, now live worldwide only on NETFLIX


Storyteller  Ink.  along  with  their  digital  distribution  partner  FilmKaravan  team  up  to   digitally  release    a  documentary  that  brings  to  light  a  rarely  seen  perspective  of   academic excellence-­‐  pressure  and  isolation.  Abhay  Kumar’s  hybrid  documentary,   PLACEBO  is  an  observational  examination  about  student  life  in  one  of  the  most   competitive  institutions  in the  world—All  India  Institute  of  Medical  Sciences  (AIIMS)   in  New  Delhi.

Those  who  get  through  the  incredibly  low  acceptance  rate  (less  than  0.1%)  for  the   undergraduate  study  at  AIIMS,  are  marked  in  a  way.   From  the  outside,  these   students  are deemed  celebrities  in  the  academic  circles,  but  rarely  do  we  see  what   becomes  of  them  as  they  pass  through  the  corridors  of  excellence.  .  When  a  freak   accident  on  campus  leaves a  final  year  student  grievously  injured,  his  elder  brother,   a  filmmaker,  decides  to  go  inside  and  find  out  what  happened.  .  In  order  to  make   sense  of  it  all,  Kumar  uses  a  camera  to film  seemingly  innocuous  interviews,  looking   for  patterns  of  looming  violence,  both  towards  self  and  others.  However,  as  the   characters  start  opening  themselves  to  the  camera,  a startling  new  reality  begins  to   emerge.-­‐  stress,  pressure  and  isolation  reach  breaking  point  and  events  spiral  out  of   control  as  the  story  takes  a  sinister  turn.  The  film  raises  serious questions  about  our   education  system,  the  constant  pressure  we  put  on  others,  and  ourselves  and  how   we  are  failing  to  deal  with  the  unspeakable  rampant  epidemic  running through   youth-­‐  a  crushing  sense  of  isolation.  ‘Placebo’  uses  a  hybrid  form-­‐  mixing  animation   with  variety  footage,  fact  and  fiction,  archives  and  found  footage  to  traverse  this complex  mindscape  of  restless  youth  and  broken  ambition.

Arundhati  Roy,  winner  Man  Booker  Prize  for  ‘The  God  of  Small  Things’  remarked,     “Placebo  is  an  important,  deeply  moving,  stunningly  made  film.  It’s  omissions, particularly  on  the question  of  caste  and  gender,  are  egregious  and  some  might  even   say  unpardonable.  And  yet  the  insight  it  offers  into  what  students  in  this  country  are   going  through—even  the brightest,  luckiest  ones—is  searing.  Be  provoked  by  it,   quarrel  with  it,  love  it,  hate  it.  But  see  it.  I  am  so  glad  that  I  did.”

Speaking  on  the  new  partnership,  Abhay  Kumar,  comments.  “The  odds  were  always   against  us  while  making  the  film.  Archana  and  I  today,  mark  a  momentous  occasion   where  the film  is  opening  up  to  the  world  on  one  of  the  best  digital  platforms.  This  is   where  the  second  journey  of  the  film  starts,  and  we  are  every  curious  to  see  the   path  it  carves  for itself.”

Apoorva  Bakshi,  Head  of  Original  Production  &  Partnerships,  FilmKaravan,  shared,  “A   truly  nihilistic  take  on  a  subject  few  people  know  about  and  even  fewer  people   discuss. Placebo  is  a  story  that  had  to  be  told  and  it  deserves  a  home  that  justifies  its   message  and  brings  it  to  the  largest  possible  audience.  FilmKaravan  is  proud  to  be  a   part  of  this journey  and  hopes  that  the  viewers  like  Abhay’s  magnum  opus.”

Don’t  forget  to  watch  Placebo,  now  live  on  Netflix,  Worldwide.