Sila Samayangalil review: This Priyadharshan film conveys its message in a non-preachy way

I was personally quite happy to see Ashok Selvan in a role like this one and here is hoping that we see him more often. However, SS makes that distinction. It was about the solace we sometimes find in strangers, about the complex nature of our species and our problems and the uncharacteristic decisions we tend to take sometimes. The conundrum was confoundingly beautiful — do you crucify the parents for doing what they thought was best or give the mother the unconditional right to decide, even if she chooses to take the hard way out? Sila Samayangalil works more as an awareness film, in comparison to say Aruvi, as it neatly gives small pellets of information about the disease and its transmission. Well-intentioned for sure, but why do we need statistics to validate what the movie makes us feel? Sila Samayangalil, for me, was not just about HIV. Probably this was the reason behind the baffling sound design, which was a little too audible. Sila Samayangalil — the film couldn’t have found a better name. It puts us in a position to judge these characters by placing their tales at different points on the grey scale. You can choose to vent your frustration on unsuspecting victims (Sriya Reddy), choose to suffer in silence (Prakash Raj) or be prepared for the outcome (Ashok Selvan). Seven people, who all have to reasons to believe that they could be infected with HIV/AIDS, wait for their results together. In Aruvi, the story was more about the aftermath — how she got the disease isn’t as important. But the success lies in making us realise the complexity of human stories as well. Somehow our filmmakers feel the need to explain their films with a message card at the end of the film, streamlining the myriad perspectives of the films they make. We are first-hand witnesses to the discomfort our characters face to even admit that they are there for an HIV test. Related News
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Updated: May 6, 2018 8:05:19 am

Sila Samayangalil works more as an awareness film as it neatly gives small pellets of information. But except for the ‘message card’ at the end (I will come back to this), the film’s writing is organically fluid. Diya made me think the complex right to choice — the mother’s choice was ignored as her well-wishers decided an abortion would be better for her future. Sila Samayangalil was originally intended for a theatrical release and later found its way to the voluminous Netflix archives. It takes its time to set-up and during this, there is a lot of ‘show and not tell’. A minor price to pay for a film that works on so many other counts.