Cast: Sobhana, Nasir, Preethy
Indian Women, who leave their country and spend the
best years of their life keeping home for their husbands
and children, have to contend with the empty nest syndrome
alone. Suddenly, all their work is perceived as worthless
by impatient children and husbands busy climbing up
the ladder of success (they would protest it is for
the family). Self-esteem plummets as these women try
to set things right the only way they can and are invariably
spurned for their efforts and branched rigid, inflexible
Mitr - My Friend, actress Revathy's directorial debut,
tells the story of Lakshmi, a middle-class girl from
Chidambaram in Tamil Nadu who is married to US born
and bred Prithvi and moves to Silicon Valley.
As Prithvi gets involved in work, Lakshmi is busy with
their daughter, Divya, and their palatial home that
they acquire as Prithvi gets more and more successful.
years later, Lakshmi has to contend with the fact that
her little girl has grown up and wishes to move out.
Lakshmi realizes how lonely she is, when she does not
seem to be able to connect with anyone and finds herself
talking to flowers. Divya's American boyfriend and her
decision to drop out of school has Lakshmi alarmed to
care too much.
isolation drives her to chat rooms where she finds an
online friend, Mitr, who seems to understand Lakshmi's
troubles and also helps her re-invent herself. Mitr
is a heart-warming story about relationships set in
a specific time and place to a particular kind of people.
The heart is totally Indian, which explains the feel
Revathy, reveals herself to be an astute observer as
she chooses the largely ignored NRI housewife as the
There is a theory that women make better detective fiction
writers because they pay attention to the little things
and watching Mitr with its all-woman crew, one of the
things you notice is the attention to detail apart from
the statuesque Shobana that is.
Everything is just so right from the music (snatches
of songs to convey a whole range of emotions), the visuals
(Shobhan's character taking out the garbage), the clothes
the characters wear (not exotic Indian, it is more casual
Indian outfits), the sets (the house looks like the
home of an affluent NRI complete with brass lamp and
over-stuffed arm chairs) and the continuity (Divya's
intelligent script should be commended for veering away
from stereotypes and for its subtlety - there is no
breast-beating Mera Bharat Mahaan kind of jingoism.
The cinematography is polished with easy-on-the-eye
frames. The casting is spot on and Shobana strides the
screen like a colossus. She brings Lakshmi to life effortlessly
- from breaking out into Tamil, her laughter and tears
are all ours, her Lakshmi lives in our conscience much
after the end credits roll on. Newcomer Preeti Vissa
has also done a wonderful job as the vivacious Divya.
All in all, Mitr displays a confidence and an assurance
one would hardly associate with a debut. Way to go Revathy!