After directorial debut “Somaborton”, Bengali filmmaker Saikat Talukdar comes back with a new short movie: “Drishtikon: A Girl’s Story”.

The short movie starts with the husband (played by Saja Ray) and the wife (played by Manisha Dutta) on their wedding night. The next day, after his (pretty nosy) friend asks him about the night, the newly married man starts questioning his wife’s virginity. So, the couple goes to the doctor. The latter puts the concept of virginity into perspective.

The team behind the movie wishes to raise awareness on hurtful custom and ideas, especially spread in rural areas. If the movie per se could use improvements (notably in terms of acting, lighting, continuity or editing), the topic itself and the message it carries is interesting and important. Preconceived beliefs about virginity perpetuate macho and paternalist societies and threaten women’s health (physically, psychologically and socially). The World Health Organization is actually very clear that they want to end virginity testing worldwide (https://www.who.int/reproductivehealth/publications/eliminating-virginity-testing-interagency-statement/en/).

Going back to the film and besides the technical aspects, it would also have been great to develop the wife’s point of view. Even if the movie is called “A Girl’s Story”, the angle used is the husband’s and the wife’s character is not that deepened. In general, and maybe it is because it is a short movie, the characters are not well-built enough for the viewer to feel empathetic towards them. Stronger characters on screen would have made the movie more impactful.

In conclusion, the movie has a margin for improvement but it raises an important topic.

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