Parshya is beloved by his local cricket team, gets excellent marks in school, and loves to read. Such qualities should have easily put him in the running for courting Archi, a smart, headstrong girl who enjoys her independence. Except Parshya comes from a Dalit family, and Archi is the daughter of a wealthy, upper caste political candidate. Despite this – or perhaps because of it – Archi soon gives in to Parshya’s advances, and they find ways to spend time together, as they fall in love.
When they are discovered by Archi’s family, Parshya and his friends receive a severe beating from Archi’s brother, leading the lovers to elope. Alone in the city, they must learn to live within their modest means, hoping that their love will guide them through the harsh realities of their situation.
Returning to Reel Asian with his second feature, director Nagraj Manjule (Fandry, 2013) again casts non-actors to set the authentic tone of the film, which features singing, dancing and music composed by Indian director-composer duo Ajay-Atul. Sairat recently became the highest-grossing Marathi film in India.
There will be a 20 minute intermission during the film screening.
Nagraj Manjule (in attendance)
Born and raised in Karmala, a small town in the Sholapur district in Maharashtra, Nagraj Manjule has closely witnessed rural India’s struggle for education. His award-winning short film Pistulva (2010) is a reflection of his own experience. Manjule is one of the most important poets in Marathi literature of the last decade. His Damani Literary Award winning collection of poems, Unhachya Kataviruddha, received a warm welcome among readers of contemporary Marathi literature. Manjule’s previous feature, Fandry (2013), had its Canadian premiere at Reel Asian in 2014, where it received the National Bank First Feature Film Award.