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Tribhanga – A Nuanced Storytelling Of The Lives Of Women, By Women, For Women

Posted: January 16, 2021

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Tribhanga literally means divided into three, and is about three generations of women, their strengths and flaws; their compulsions and choices; their triumphs and losses; and their difficult relationships.

I’ve been on a TV watching spree… and just watched Tribhanga. A movie which brought Kajol and Tanvi Azmi, two of my favourites, onto my screen at home.

Set against the realities of single motherhood, a conservative and patriarchal society, child abuse, the baggage of having a parent who is larger than life, the movie is an exploration into the complexity of  relationships, especially mother daughter relationships.

Narratives of women like you and me

No movie of around 2 hrs can  address all these issues, and Tribhanga doesn’t try or pretend to do that.

It just weaves the narratives of the women, their differing perspectives on the same circumstances with sensitivity, and without judging them for how they responded to situations.

It takes us on a journey of the lives of women that are the result of choices we make; or have others make for us. It is about how our choices are the result of not just our present, but also of our past.

Nuanced storytelling

It is a nuanced storytelling about the childhood wounds that we must heal from to be able to break free from them; or to have to them control us, our lives and happiness forever.

Holding on to our pain can stop us from doing what we need the most; and keep us from finding love and fulfillment. Healing the mother wound; letting go and being able to forgive are essential to breaking the cycle of trauma.

The subtlety of the sets, music and styling which adds so much to the experience was also a refreshing change from what we see routinely. In her first Hindi film as both script writer and director, Renuka Shahane comes across as almost flawless – something that can be said especially by the fact that the three women come across as very believable in their reasons for the choices they make, and that the male cast that supports the three main women have their own, well defined places in the story, and not just as foil.

Fun fact: Tanvi Azmi’s sarees especially are a treat for the eyes, for a handloom lover like me.

Coming from someone who watches extraordinarily little TV…. Don’t miss this one!

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