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The film examines the plight of a group of widows forced into poverty at a temple in the holy city of Varanasi. It focuses on a relationship between one of the widows, who wants to escape the social restrictions imposed on widows, and a man who is from the highest caste and a follower of Mahatma Gandhi.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 17 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sarala Kariyawasam ...
Chuyia (as Sarala)
Buddhi Wickrama ...
Baba
Rinsly Weerarathne ...
Chuyia's Husband
Iranganie Serasinghe ...
Mother in Law (as Iranganee Serasinghe)
Hermantha Gamage ...
Barber
Ronica Sajnani ...
Manorama ...
Madhumati (as Manorma)
...
Snehalata
Meera Biswas ...
Gyanvati
Vidula Javalgekar ...
'Auntie' Patiraji (as Dr. Vidula Javalgekar)
...
Shakuntala
...
Sanoja Bibile ...
Woman Bather
Dolly Ahluwalia ...
Upset Woman (as Dolly Ahluwalia Tewari)
...
Narayan
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Storyline

A thesis picture. In 1938, Gandhi's party is making inroads in women's rights. Chuyia, a child already married but living with her parents, becomes a widow. By tradition, she is unceremoniously left at a bare and impoverished widows' ashram, beside the Ganges during monsoon season. The ashram's leader pimps out Kalyani, a young and beautiful widow, for household funds. Narayan, a follower of Gandhi, falls in love with her. Can she break with tradition and religious teaching to marry him? The ashram's moral center is Shakuntala, deeply religious but conflicted about her fate. Can she protect Kalyani or Chuyia? Amid all this water, is rebirth possible or does tradition drown all? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

widow | tradition | love | ashram | india | See All (209) »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material involving sexual situations, and for brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

26 May 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Agua  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$56,280 (USA) (28 April 2006)

Gross:

$3,222,857 (USA) (1 September 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although Lisa Ray speaks Hindi, it is not her mother tongue. She worked on her diction to perfect the dialog. See more »

Goofs

In the scene when Chuiya is first running up the steps after Kaalu, she is barefoot. When the camera switches perspectives, she has a pair of sandals on. In the next frame, she is barefoot again. See more »

Quotes

[from trailer]
Chuyia's Father: [to young Chuyia] Child. Do you remember getting married? Your husband is dead. You're a widow now.
See more »

Connections

Follows Earth (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Chan Chan
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User Reviews

 
A symbolic masterpiece.
11 April 2006 | by (San Jose, CA) – See all my reviews

I just wanted to say that the symbolism of water in this movie was incredible. There was rain and rivers as well as drinking water. You could really specify that it was in terms to purify the characters and wash away negativities that they had lived through. Water was really a wonderful movie by my favorite director of all time, Deepa Mehta. She is honestly brilliant and I was amazed by the beauty and cinematography of this movie. It surpassed that of any other movie shes done and it shows. However, I believe that Deepa Mehta really drew a lot of lines in the script because it was not her familiar work. Her first movie in the trilogy, Fire, was very controversial because she did not censor it at all. You can really tell that she took out some parts from fear of the idiotic fundamentalists and political parties. Though she did that, it still had a meaninful moral that was gracious and the entire movie really was a refreshing burst of water.


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