Sita movie review: Poignant, thought-provoking and deeply moving.
What: Very few short films have stayed in your mind and have registered a strong impact even with their short tenure. Sita, made by director Abhinav Singh starring Shriya Pilgaonkar, is one such thought-provoking film that tugs at your heartstrings with its mere 19 minutes of runtime.
Sita movie synopsis
A young Dalit boy played by Om Kanojia finds a dead new born girl outside a temple on the streets and decides to give her respectful interment but between the circus of archaic traditions, it is not going to be easy.
After despondencies and dejections from everywhere, he happens to meet a mysterious woman named Maithili (also a name of goddess Sita) - Shriya Pilgaonkar by the banks of a river who happens to tell him a proverbial story that in turns helps to take the right step.
Through that proverbial story, Abhinav empathically gazes at the discrimination both – caste and gender and how women in the society have been victims of the same. Personally, the particular story in Ramayana which Maithili narrates was not known to me and hence was fascinating.
An enigmatic Shriya Pilgaonkar impresses while holding the mirror up to the society. She looks beautiful, ethereally divine and menacing.”Maano toh Bhagwan, na maano toh Patthar”, the message is profound and conveyed with eerie undertones.
It was also good to see actor Lilliput playing a Brahmin priest who turns down the boy’s request to cremate the body by dismissing her as a sinful being. Abhinav’s sense of aesthetics is spot on. He masterfully keeps the tonality grim and dark that resonates with the seriousness of the subject, and the boy’s bewilderment is aptly depicted by child artiste Om Kanojia. His expressive and innocent eyes reveal his dilemma in providing justice to the dead infant.
A poignant film like Sita has many metaphorical interpretations. It’s a brave and honest depiction of the norms of our society that urges you to ponder over.
I go with 4 stars out of 5 for Sita. The short, which has been widely appreciated in many film festivals, is streaming on Disney+Hotstar from 23rd March 2023.