SHADOW BIRD (SONSI) Film Short Review

In the Face of Never-Ending COVID-19 Surges, We Need the Best of the Best Cinematic Pick-Me-Ups

Those on the lookout for films with the cinematic magic to raise their spirits during these COVID-19 surges should consider this mesmerizing hallucinogenic & hypnagogic tale by Director Sivita Singh. It’s enigmatic qualities can make you feel as if you are experiencing a loopy de loop of phantasmagoric proportions during these perilous days.

Eight-year-old Nadi lives in a mythical village where the rain never stops.  Everyday, before the village awakens, she wonders between the consciousness and unconsciousness terrain of a Twilight Zone until she meets up with her Shadow Bird. The mysterious entity, Time-Keeper, eventually appears after their meeting, and, upon his passing through area, Nadia’s village awakens. One day, her Shadow Bird does not show, nor the Time-Keeper.

And Nadi is off on a quest.

Nadi (Arohi Radhakrishnan) and Jameel Khan (The Time-Keeper). Picture courtesy Shark Party Media

SHADOW BIRD (SONSI) has features of a lullaby crossed with a fairytale. Parable? Allegory? The film’s enigmatic quality is one of main the sources of its cinematic magic. There is a hint of melancholy. SHADOW BIRD (SANSI) seems as if it was made as much for soothing the inner child of adults as for soul-soothing kids, both dealing, albeit at different states of mind, with the unpredictable swirling fates of Mother Nature which may best be understood through an appreciation of the story-telling power of parable and allegory.

This reviewer was lured to screen this 27-minute beaute for a number of reasons but especially because of the numerous cinematic epaulets SHADOW BIRD (SANSI) had scooped up on its way to being qualified for the 2022 Academy Awards and consideration for nomination in its ‘Best Short Film Category. Those epaulets are WINNER: BEST FILM Bengaluru International Short Film Festival 2021,  WINNER: BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY 67th National Film Awards; WINNER: BEST SHORT FILM Lady Filmmakers Festival 2021;  NOMINEE: BEST SHORT FILM NYIFF New York Indian Film Festival 2021; OFFICIAL SELECTION Montecatini International Short Film Festival 2021 IFFSA Toronto 2021.

Also:  National Award the film received in India for Best Cinematography (Non-Feature Film), the highest recognition for cinema in India. ‘Shadow Bird’ qualified for the Oscars by virtue of winning the Bengaluru International Short Film Festival, the only Oscar-qualifying film festival in India. It also won ‘Best Short Film’ at the Lady Filmmakers Festival in Beverly Hills, CA.


Director Savita Singh. Picture courtesy Shark Party Media

A 2007 Cinematography graduate from the Film and Television Institute of India, Savita Singh has worked with varying visual styles and formats. She has shot feature films, shorts, documentaries, and advertisements. She a founding member of the Indian Women Cinematographers Collective (IWCC), a forum for women cinematographers based in India.


Sharib Khan and Vikar Kumar are the co-founders of KHAN & KUMAR Media Pvt Ltd, a collaboration between childhood friends who share a passion for stories that show the extraordinary in the ordinary. SHADOW BIRD (SONSI) is their debut production.

Vikas Kumar is an Indian actor (Hamid, Parmanu). His most recent work is a lead part in the 2021 International Emmy Awards Nominee for Best Drama Series, ‘AARYA’.

Sharib Khan is a tech-entrepreneur based in New York who has a passion for indie films and can often be seen doing headstands as a yoga practitioner.


Jameel Khan (Time-Keeper). Click here for more info.
Arohi Radhakrishman (Nadi). Click here for more info.
Music Composer Tajdar Junaid. Click here for more info.
​Editor Hemnti Sarkar. Click here for more info.

Nadi (Aarohi Radhakrishnan). Picture courtesy Shark Party Media

Gregg Morris can be reached at,