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.
It's 1947 and the borderlines between India and Pakistan are being drawn. A young girl bears witnesses to tragedy as her ayah is caught between the love of two men and the rising tide of political and religious violence.
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Says Noemi Weis, President of Filmblanc: "Deepa Mehta is a master of the exposé. As a documentary director, she has elevated the issue of domestic violence in such a way that we can no ... See full summary »
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
Visually Appealing, Emotionally Touching, Funny and Witty
I just saw this last night at the TIFF with no expectations (originally didn't even want to see it). But what an enjoyable film this was!!! The dialogue was quite witty, the stars were attractive and gave very believable performances (my friend said that she was so drawn into it that she forgot those people were just acting and weren't really living the life of the characters). The story had the audience empathize with the situation and all those involved, with lightened bits of humour intermixed with sad/dramatic parts throughout.
What captivated me the most was how beautifully filmed each scene was (in that respect, it reminded me of House of Flying Daggers). The stunning cinematography, vivid colours were all so carefully planned. In every frame, I can envision a beautiful photograph which can be composed from it.
The score was also very good and added to the mood of the film.
Go see it if you have the opportunity, you will not be disappointed (oh, might want to bring some Kleenex tho').
oh, and since it was at TIFF, Deepa spoke a few words (she appears to be very down to earth and sincere) and the cast was also present (John Abraham and Lisa Ray are absolutely gorgeous but very modest and subtle). These people did such a fabulous job, but remain so approachable and true. Am so proud of them!!!!
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