The Indian film Parched by the director Leena Yadav was shot by Titanic cinematographer Russell Carpenter and had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2015. The picture has won many awards at international film festivals, amongst them Stockholm IFF and Toulouse IFF. The picture has been already sold to number of countries and has had positive critical response.
Parched offers aenergetic storytelling from a female point of view and touches on problems that are not specific to Indian women but also to women elsewhere in the world. Ms.Yadav approaches controversial subjects with open mind. Parched skillfully navigates between painful, and joyful with real sensitivity. Not necessarily by the subject but tonally it might remind the spectator American feminist manifesto “Thelma and Louise”. Parched shows to women, that it is in their power to change their fate which is artificially determined by misogynistic rules of society.
The director states: “Born a woman, I was raised to judge and treat people as human beings above and beyond their gender, religion or caste. This story is my reaction to misogynistic society that treats women as objects of sex, where their greatest role is to serve men. Giving my women characters a voice that observes, absorbs and reacts was what drove me to write this drama about ordinary women who are driven to extraordinary ends. All of us are sometimes driven by social structure to be ‘dutiful’ of values and norms, without questioning or evaluating their significance. If questioning makes us an outlaw, then so be it!”
In our times when one can read and watch news from all over the world where one can see daily cases of individual or mass rape and other abuses of women not only in India but also in so called advanced western countries, the films like Parched play a very positive role of raising awareness.