An ageing father waits, in vain, at the bus stop for his son Raghu, a student at the University of Trivandrum, who is supposed to be coming home for the holidays. The elderly Chakyar’s eager happiness slowly turns to disappointment and then anxiety. After several days with no news of Raghu, his family learn that the police have arrested him for singing revolutionary songs at the university’s annual fête. Chakyar goes to the capital, hoping to find support from the Minister of Internal Affairs, and is soon joined by his daughter, who does not, however, share his optimism. When it becomes clear that Raghu cannot escape a jail sentence, the old man gradually loses his reason … In Piravi, Shaji N. Karun denounces not only the corruption that exists within the establishment, but also focuses on the impotence of the individual in the face of an oppressive system. By keeping Raghu off-screen, the director conveys a sense of absence and uncertainty with a rare intensity.

Original Title Piravi
German Title Die Geburt
French Title La naissance
Other Titles The Birth
Directed by Shaji N. Karun
Country India
Available Formats 35mm
Screenplay S. Jayachandran Nair
Soundtrack G. Aravindan
Cinematography Sunny Joseph
Production Film Folk, Trivandrum, Kerala
Runtime 110 Min.
Language Malayalam/d/f
C.V. Sreeraman

Nationales indisches Filmfestival, 1988: Bester Film, beste Regie, bester Schauspieler, bester Ton; Cannes 1989, Caméra d'Or, Mention Spéciale der Internationalen Jury; Silver Leopard Filmfestival Locarno


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trigon-film is a foundation with outstanding films from Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe, pursuing the aim to dismantle cultural barriers and prejudices. Since its foundation in 1988, trigon has distributed more than 500 titles to Swiss cinema houses, on DVD and in its online cinema. Most of these titles remain in the trigon collection so that the access to this visual legacy is maintained. Learn more