Monday, January 11, 2016

Film Review: Sita Sings the Blues

Have you ever watched a film you would never choose for yourself just because someone hands the DVD to you? I'm not saying I would never choose to watch "Sita Sings the Blues" on my own, but I can admit that it was unlikely I would've picked it for myself left to my own devices. Thankfully, a coworker plopped the DVD into my hands last week and said, "Hey, I liked this." I immediately decided to take the DVD home. My coworker saw my intent and asked, "What if you don't like it?" I replied that if I didn't like it, then I would stop watching it. I didn't stop watching it.

Facts about "Sita Sings the Blues":
Created by: Nina Paley
Released in: 2009
Music by: Annette Hanshaw
Run-time: 82 minutes
How to find it: Watch free at Sita Sings the Blues website or Check your local library for the DVD

Rama, Hanuman, Sita, rain
Still from "Sita Sings the Blues", taken from
This movie was not a huge time commitment, so I didn't feel too stressed about giving it a try. I'm so glad I did. It was a bit slow going at the start as I wasn't sure what to expect or where it would take me. Once I relaxed and just let it lead me where it wanted, it was great! The animations were beautiful and the fusion of blues music with more traditional Indian tunes and themes was so unique. The film tells the story of Ramayana by following the events that happened to Sita. From my understanding, this is a rather old story, so if you know it, the ending likely won't surprise you. However, even if you do know the story, I can guarantee you've never seen it interpreted and presented in this manner. The themes of the story were not very relatable to my more modern feminist views, but the film parallels Sita's journey with the story-line of a contemporary American couple. I found this made the traditional tale a bit more applicable to today's more independent attitudes.

Verdict: I would definitely recommend you give this film a chance.

Stray thoughts: If you like this film, you may appreciate the book "The Strange Library" by Haruki Murakami.

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