Alternates between hollowing and harrowing – The New Indian Express

Express press service

Early features may seem more affected and ambitious than they ever are. This is especially true of directors who have already cut their teeth in other departments of the cinematic art. Manish Mundra—pioneer producer of award-winning films from Masaan and Ankhon Dekhi to Newton and Ramprasad Ki Tervi—has now directed Siya, a film about rape and violence in Uttar Pradesh.

Manish begins with naturalism, capturing dusty sunsets and fields buzzing with the sound of crickets. Soon, however, he takes a shrewd detour and the “film festival” alarm bells start ringing.

A permanent horror hangs over the face of Sita Singh (Pooja Pandey), who is abducted, beaten and raped by four men. She was rescued seven or eight days after her parents first approached the authorities.

Police apathy abounds – “You will be disgraced,” warns the station manager, refusing to file a first information report. Sita, too, seems resigned to this fate; it takes him some time before he opens up to Mahender (Vineet Kumar), a law-educated family friend, and promises his will to fight.

In 2017, a 17-year-old girl was gang raped in Unnao in UP. Siya draws heavily from this incident, except for one crucial detail, an attempt by the victim to self-immolate outside the chief minister’s residence, which catapulted the case to national attention.

Similarly, any reference to Hathras (we see a body cremated by force in the middle of the night, while the main author belongs to the dominant Thakur caste) is reduced to a strict minimum. Manish, it sometimes seems, plays it safe by depoliticizing the subject of rape. After all, rape happens everywhere, regardless of state, caste or creed.

But these crimes were directly related to the contexts in which they took place – and to ignore them is to miss a crucial element of the pathology that Manish seems to be probing (a film that avoided this problem and was released in theaters anyway). was item 15).

Siya’s impact isn’t helped much by her visual grammar. There are slow, contemplative pans and carts, often ending with a close-up of the victim’s face. We see ants crawling on his restraining chains. A dream sequence emphasizing Sita’s pain and trauma unfolds like a bad street play. The exact sequence of his abuse is chopped up and relayed in a non-linear fashion. It’s a strange way to structure a film about sexual abuse – giving it the dimensions of a thriller.

There is, however, a moment of beauty and grace. At the edge of a river, Mahender and Siya dive into the ashes of his deceased father. At that moment, they hear gunshots and ducks. The desperation of the scene is mitigated by a lone boat that lures them in and carries them to the rescue.

Siya

Starring: Pooja Pandey, Vineet Kumar

Director: Manish Mundra

Rating: 2.5/5

Early features may seem more affected and ambitious than they ever are. This is especially true of directors who have already cut their teeth in other departments of the cinematic art. Manish Mundra—pioneer producer of award-winning films from Masaan and Ankhon Dekhi to Newton and Ramprasad Ki Tervi—has now directed Siya, a film about rape and violence in Uttar Pradesh. Manish begins with naturalism, capturing dusty sunsets and fields buzzing with the sound of crickets. Soon, however, he takes a shrewd detour and the “film festival” alarm bells start ringing. A permanent horror hangs over the face of Sita Singh (Pooja Pandey), who is abducted, beaten and raped by four men. She was rescued seven or eight days after her parents first approached the authorities. Police apathy abounds – “You will be disgraced,” warns the station manager, refusing to file a first information report. Sita, too, seems resigned to this fate; it takes him some time before he opens up to Mahender (Vineet Kumar), a law-educated family friend, and promises his will to fight. In 2017, a 17-year-old girl was gang raped in Unnao in UP. Siya draws heavily from this incident, except for one crucial detail, an attempt by the victim to self-immolate outside the chief minister’s residence, which catapulted the case to national attention. Similarly, any reference to Hathras (we see a body cremated by force in the middle of the night, while the main author belongs to the dominant Thakur caste) is reduced to a strict minimum. Manish, it sometimes seems, plays it safe by depoliticizing the subject of rape. After all, rape happens everywhere, regardless of state, caste or creed. But these crimes were directly related to the contexts in which they took place – and to ignore them is to miss a crucial element of the pathology that Manish seems to be probing (a film that avoided this problem and was released in theaters anyway). was item 15). Siya’s impact isn’t helped much by her visual grammar. There are slow, contemplative pans and carts, often ending with a close-up of the victim’s face. We see ants crawling on his restraining chains. A dream sequence emphasizing Sita’s pain and trauma unfolds like a bad street play. The exact sequence of his abuse is chopped up and relayed in a non-linear fashion. It’s a strange way to structure a film about sexual abuse – giving it the dimensions of a thriller. There is, however, a moment of beauty and grace. At the edge of a river, Mahender and Siya dive into the ashes of his deceased father. At that moment, they hear gunshots and ducks. The desperation of the scene is mitigated by a lone boat that lures them in and carries them to the rescue. Siya Cast: Pooja Pandey, Vineet Kumar Director: Manish Mundra Rating: 2.5/5

Comments are closed.