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Based on Thomas Hardy's classic novel Tess of the D'Urbervilles, 'Trishna' tells the story of one woman whose life is destroyed by a combination of love and circumstances. Set in contemporary Rajasthan, Trishna (Freida Pinto) meets a wealthy young British businessman Jay Singh (Riz Ahmed) who has come to India to work in his father's hotel business. After an accident destroys her father's Jeep, Trishna goes to work for Jay, and they fall in love. But despite their feelings for each other, they cannot escape the conflicting pressures of a rural society which is changing rapidly through industrialisation, urbanisation and, above all, education. Trishna's tragedy is that she is torn between the traditions of her family life and the dreams and ambitions that her education has given her. Written by
I am indebted to Sarya-Jayothsna who's review of Trishna certainly helped me to identify with the movie. Having only been to New Delhi and never experiencing rural India I had little idea at to what might be considered "normal" in such an environment.
I have always admired the sultry beauty of Indian women and Freida Pinto (as Trishna) added a much deeper aspect to my admiration. The total subservience that she displayed when working at her first job in the Jaipur hotel was delightful - every male was addressed so beautifully demurely as "Sir" with the typical Indian hand gesture of obeisance. The skill with which her manners were conducted was, far from being demeaning, an absolute pleasure to the extent it made me want to reciprocate (had I been there, of course). Far from placing Trishna into a position of being "used," I felt that it inspired a desire to treat her with the same respect that she gave to others. I guess, as a man, I would interpret that as making me want to love her - and that has nothing to do with sex - it made me want to cherish her and let her know just how much value she had as a person. So the way Jay (Riz Ahmed) simply used her as a pleasure toy incensed me. How could anyone be so insensitive not to realise how his treatment hurt?
As a simple, sincere village girl, Trishna had never loved anyone in an intimate way in her life and so, when a handsome young man shows an interest in her, it literally sweeps her off her feet and, sadly, there is no one to pick her up. She fell in love and he fell in lust! If ever a movie had evoked a strong desire to lovingly comfort the leading character, Trishna does that.
I suppose, because the story is an adaptation of an English classic, the ending was inevitable but I really wish it hadn't been. I was left feeling empty and useless. What a waste!
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