Images of India : A doomed love story that is India’s sleeper hit movie…

SairatCouples are breaking what writer Arundhati Roy, in her Booker prize-winning novel, The God of Small Things, described as “Love Laws” that “lay down who should be loved … And how … And how much”. Now a low-budget Marathi-language film Sairat (Wild) on the often cruel – and unsettling – consequences of falling in love in India has become the biggest sleeper hit of the year. It is anti-Bollywood: it is made by a Dalit filmmaker, on a shoe-string budget of $597,460 with a cast of newcomers, including two unknown amateur debutants, in the lead. The film also upends popular Bollywood stereotypes of love and gender. An upper-caste girl falls in love with a lower-caste boy. The assertive girl takes the lead in the relationship and there is no happy ending. People have been flocking to watch it. The film has earned more than $12 million already. Critics are raving about what they call the “Sairat phenomenon”. The film received a standing ovation at the Berlin International Film Festival, where it was India’s official entry.