- Director: Rima Das
- Writer: Rima Das
- Producer: Rima Das
Bulbul can't sing!
What an odd little film...it has been screened at many LGBT film festivals throughout the word...yet, it is not [by any stretch of the imagination] a first-tier LGBT film. Yes, it does feature a young gay man...who gets periodically forgotten about throughout [but still manages to pack a well-placed punch or two]...the main themes in this film are burgeoning sexuality, traditional patriarchy...and, that old favourite...arranged marriages...in rural India, where time stands still...despite the howling cries from modernity.
Rima Das is her own one-woman production company...quite literally, doing everything herself to get her projects off the ground and onto the silver screen...that, in itself, has to be admired. This is as decent a film can be when non-professional actors are used...the leads do do an admirable job...sadly, the support does not fare as well!
Bulbul has a pivotal scene involving the two young women...they are caught flirting [illicitly] with a couple of boys...all Hell breaks loose! The townsmen beat the girls black-and-blue...well, that was the intention, what we see is a slap-happy, sloppy improvisation that goes on for far too long. It really is a case of...less is more. If performers can't do stunt-fighting convincingly...then don't show it. There are other ways to convey violence...via sound and crisp editing.
Weaknesses aside, Bulbul Can Sing has a captivating freshness. Rima Das' voice needs to be heard, she is tackling subjects that need to be told and seen...modernity stops for no man...it's just that in some places some men do what they can to stop it themselves...the reprecussions can be tragic. A film that - surely and hopefully - will change [traditional] minds!
Bulbul a teenage school going girl, growing up in a rural setting in Assam, falls in love. While she is in the verge of discovering her teen life, a tragedy strikes with her best friend. Bulbul free spirited, rebellious and stubborn begins to question herself and her love life. Teenage, love, secrecy, mixed with passion and mindless societal dogma and yet speaks about survival and freedom.