Satire in the Age of Letters and Technology- more than just a pinch of it.
I wish that I would
Be embraced even if I wasn’t quite the child
You wanted me to be
Be protected even if I never told you
Be heard even when I said what you didn’t want to hear
Be trusted even after I let you down
Be capable even if I did nothing at all
Be deserving even if I didn’t follow your dreams
Be accepted and understood for who I am.
The winner of the grand jury prize for Best documentary at the Indian Film Festival, Los Angeles 2011, I Am, directed by Sonali Gulati (71 mins) chronicles the journey of an Indian lesbian filmmaker who returns to Delhi after eleven long years to confront the loss of her mother in whom she’d never had the courage to confide. To whom she feels closer in death than alive. She carries a definite sense of regret and guilt and this prompts her on a journey where she discovers how other families have coped with this reality and emerged stronger than ever before.
What makes this documentary so special is that the characters are not just playing parts, they are themselves, not afraid to show who they are to the world even when there is a fear of acceptance. It is important to speak out to let others know that there are people who are there to support you, to help you in the journey of self realization, to be family if there’s nobody else.
The mothers in the documentary are such admirable women who have dealt with their own inhibitions and have been pillars of strength for their children. When parents accept their children for who they are then nobody in society can point fingers or even if they do it hardly matters.
How can the love for your child diminish in one stroke, being gay or lesbian doesn’t change who he or she is! Nobody questions heterosexuality because that’s just how we are supposed to be right, ever wondered what’s so great about it?! It’s important to understand that there is no reason for being homosexual, it’s not a ‘situation’ which can be overcome or a phase one goes through which will pass with time, it’s a question of how I feel and how I am and whether you’re able to accept it without hoping for a change or looking for a reason.
Until recently, Homosexuality was a criminal offense, even now it’s been decriminalized only by the Delhi high court, it’s high time we abolished such archaic laws which are relics of colonial rule. We have been holding on to such laws while in England gay marriages are now legalized.
This is a breakthrough documentary which destroys the myth that homosexuality is a western phenomenon and doesn’t exist in India. At the same time it’s also a myth that the west is all accepting to homosexuality, even there in major universities research is carried out looking for cures for homosexuality. It’s not about education but only about love and acceptance for your child which gives you the strength to overcome all hurdles.
The label of being a lesbian or gay or a transgender can never be allowed to over power who you really are. It is enough to be one’s self without having to give a thousand explanations or apologies.