Societies are supposed to be about respectful cohabitation. Still, discrimination is ingrained in most of them. Be it based on race, religion, caste or colour, humans always find a way to discriminate against other humans.
Discrimination due to colour is still rampant in west and east likewise. Indians, even after predominantly being a brown-skinned country, strangely look down upon black or dark-skinned fellow humans. One one side they are known for their obsession with white skin, on the other side, ironically, they are not comfortable around people who are “white” due to a skin condition called albinism.
“The Sunflower” is 17 min short film which revolves around this subject of albinism and how our society is apathetic and inhuman to the persons with this skin condition. The film is made as a tribute to Govindarao Harishankar – The Khanjira-Drummer Legend, who was also Albino. This master of percussions named “Khanjira” was honoured with the biggest national award for performing arts “The Sangeet Naatak Akademy Award”. He is the only one to get this award for this instrument.
Pandit Gaurav Gautam shot the film in order to create awareness about albinism. The film has the basic premise of how friends alienate albinos by ridiculing them and avoiding them. With the right guidance about albinism, they realise their mistake and learn to accept such persons. The albino is played by Kritika Sharda who is decent. Surendra Rajan (grandfather) is a known face actor who is seen in many Indian films and TVCs. He is good in his brief role. Shankar Sachdeva who plays the role of the professor does the required job. Ishita Vyas is good as Priya.
Overall, even though the film has the important and required message and does the job of creating awareness about albinism, the filmmaking is very basic. It is good as an awareness film than a potent storytelling vehicle. Still a commendable effort by the team. Apart from albinism, it made me aware of The Khanjira-Drummer Legend, Govindarao Harishnakar. So we can say that the film serves its purpose well.