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A deep, intense and emotional 60 minute film about addressing depression and addictions in light of social relations and spirituality.

It’s not just “feeling blue.” It’s an overwhelming feeling that strikes suddenly. Sometimes after an emotional shock, or in more complex situations. Some do recover from depression, but some others just cope, stuck in a long process similar to ascending a mountain, falling down and having to start all the process from scratch again. Because of the social pressure, it’s hard when you’re from a certain spirituality or cultural background. But it’s even harder when you’re a single worker in London, coming from abroad who has left his family behind and find himself alone in this “city of strangers.”

A Strange Perfume of Jasmine will be a realistic cinematic 60-minute narrative depicting the turning point of Faiz’s life, a single Londoner, struggling to live, haunted by memories he tries to push away. The film depicts the fight of the man and his dual relationships with self and others. Surrounded by friends he sometimes rejects, routine work and unsuccessful romances, he also faces the dilemma between his spiritual commitments and his addiction to alcohol, which has since long ago replaced Doodh Patti, a traditional Indian drink.

Synopsis

Faiz, a writer, has been living alone in London since three years since his divorce with Yasmin, with whom he was deeply in love. He has been trying to get over his past, working, playing music, meeting friends, connecting to his spirituality, all without success. Regularly, visions of past memories haunts him and holding him back from enjoying life… and he tries to escape through smoking and drinking alcohol… until several short experiences modify his whole life.

Our vision

A Strange Perfume of Jasmine is a powerful and tragic human drama. We were inspired by real life stories as many of the team have experienced some of the main issues addressed in the movie.

Depression is often misunderstood as it is a complex issue. Our main concern is to give insights about what’s going on in the head of someone when struck by depression. In the movie as in real life, added with isolation, depression can lead to forms of hyper sensitivity, bipolar disorder or even schizophrenia.

Addictions, especially in particular religious communities, is rarely seen out from the only perspective of the “lawful” and the “forbidden”. A taboo issue which places the addict in the position of a “sinner” rather than being perceived as someone in need for care and understanding. It is only a symptom that something more serious is going on in the mind.

Too often, films stay away from showing the crude reality of these issues and their effects on the mind. We will show the most comprehensively what happens in the mind of Faiz. Never, the issues of depression or addictions have been depicted focusing on people from particular religious or cultural background where these issues are taboos. It exists, and this movie aims at understanding these issues rather than condemning these.

We feel directly concerned. Some of the team including the director, have  been through these phases and thus know probably best how it can be transcribed on film.

In the movie, the viewer also learns that Chai Latte is different from Doodh Patti.

Our goal

  • Raise awareness about depression
  • Explore these topics, often taboo in some spiritual/cultural communities.
  • Question binaries visions of life and people as divided between “right” and “wrong” and try to depict things and people as reality is: complex.
  • Smashing some stereotypes and formatted visions of spirituality, and genders.
  • Trigger debates in different social circles.
  • Achieve something aesthetically remarkable although dark at the same time, include the depiction of the perfect Doodh Patti.