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‘Little Wings’ is a distinctive take on how patriarchy subdues women

“The movie represents each woman who is silently, yet dutifully bearing the brunt of patriarchy”: Director Naveenkumar Muthaiah

Posted On: 23 NOV 2022 9:38PM by PIB Mumbai

#IFFIWood, November 23, 2022

 

‘Words have to be new

Meaning has to be new

And, the taste has to be new

When you read a poem’

Invoking the famous lines of renowned Tamil Poet Subramania Bharati, Naveenkumar Muthaiah, director of the Tamil movie ‘Little Wings’ talked passionately  about his  innate desire to present his film, which deals with a subject that has been told over and over and yet retains its relevance due to its menacing and unescapable presence in society. “When you want to tell a story or present a concept which has been told a thousand times, you should try to present it in a unique manner”, said Naveenkumar while interacting with film and media delegates at the ‘Table Talks’ session organised by PIB at the 53rd International Film Festival of India in Goa.

“My film deals with the social evil of patriarchy, which is deep rooted in society. I wanted to tell it in in a distinct manner”, said Naveenkumar Muthiah. He adds that though his film has been told from a male’s perspective, it represents each woman who is silently, yet dutifully bearing the brunt of patriarchy.

Detailing the fount of inspiration behind making such a film, Naveenkumar said seven years ago he read a short story about a married couple, by Tamil writer Gandharvan. Though he has forgotten the story itself, he remarked how sequences and themes in the story kept recurring in various forms in his life and his surroundings. He cited how finding similar couples all around him kindled his desire to pursue such a theme.

‘Little Wings’ is a film that tells the story of a village couple who, bound by the societal customs forced upon them, have been living a destitute life. “Hunger coupled with patriarchy sets the tone of the movie where the male protagonist, who, though paralyzed and taken care of by his dutiful wife, is not ready to relinquish the crown guaranteed to him by patriarchy,” said Rajesh, the Creative Director of the movie, who was also in attendance.

In the film, an old woman, trapped in a bitter marriage is pushed to the brink when her husband sets out to consume her pet rooster. Observing that women often lose battles involving clashes between their emotions and certain beliefs prevalent in society, Naveenkumar says, “There are certain rituals in rural areas where, when one person dies of hunger, one animal is to be sacrificed and buried with the dead. Though heart-breaking, my protagonist had to give up her resolve just to abide by that custom because she lives in a patriarchal society.”

Kalidoss C, the actor who played the male protagonist, also attended the session along with Saravana Maruthu, the Cinematographer. Manimeghalai has played the role of female protagonist.

Throwing light on how they zeroed in on actor Kalidoss C, Naveenkumar said the male character is inspired from his father and the environment around him. “We were looking for an actor who could fit the role and came across Kalidoss, who is part of a street play group which is making waves at the grass roots level.”

 ‘Little Wings’ was screened under the Non-Feature Films category of Indian Panorama.

Naveenkumar Muthaiah is a self-taught aspiring screenwriter and filmmaker. Little Wings, produced by Dilani Rabindran and Rajumurugan under Comrade Talkies and co-produced by VFP is his first short film as a director.

 

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