Filmmaker Arati Kadav’s Cargo – a Netflix – India original – is all set to premiere tomorrow, September 9, and it offers an interesting amalgamation of mythology and science-fiction genre, laced with some dark humor.
Watch the trailer here
Netflix has set a September 9 release date for Cargo, the Hindi-language indie sci-fi movie written and directed by Arati Kadav, who’s making her feature film debut is a production of Fundamental Pictures and Electric Films.
Cargo taps into the Indian myth of rakshasa, a demon who guides the dead through the underworld, heals them, wipes their memories, and then sends them back to Earth into a new life, essentially recycling them in the process. Prahastha, who works for the appropriately titled Post-Death Transition services, has been doing this for 75 years when Cargo opens, turning his life into a monotonous and aimless routine. Things change when he gets a new assistant in Yuvishka (Tripathi).
About the fascination for mythology and Indian mythological symbols, Arati says, “Cargo is a tribute to the dense mythologies of the subcontinent, to our myths and our folklore. These myths shape our philosophies and, in a way, inform the way we live. Narrative wise, we bring an element of “unreliable narrator” and an irreverence to space science fiction that is very rarely seen in space movies abroad. That’s because our roots lie in our grandmother’s stories, that were engaging but that also has blind spots and clear sense of them being a fable. “
Cargo had its world premiere at the 2019 MAMI Mumbai International Film Festival in October and was set to have its American premiere at the 2020 South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Festival in March. However, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic played spoilsport.
Here’s the official synopsis for Cargo, from the producers:
“Cargo is a high-tech fable, giving us a peep into a flourishing developing world of the ancient Indian demons who have now finally entered the Space Age. Our story revolves around Prahastha, a lonely demon astronaut who works alone in his spaceship. His spaceship comes close to Earth every morning to receive the Cargos. These Cargos are people who have just died on Earth and we learn that Prahastha works for Post Death Transition Services (PDTS), a large flourishing company that pioneered in computerisation, transitioning and recycling of dead people for rebirth. Today, after many years, a new popular astronaut Yuvishka, trained in cutting edge technology will be joining him.”
Cargo is out on September 9 on Netflix in India and elsewhere.