A relief camp becomes a microcosm in flood-based film, Moonnaam Pralayam
The film tells the stories of a group of people seeking refuge inside a relief camp in Kuttanad
The devastating flood of last year has spawned enough human -interest stories to provide fodder for filmmakers. Two films made on this subject are awaiting release—Jayaraj’s Roudram 2018 and Ratheesh Raju’s Moonnaam Pralayam. As the latter is set to open in theatres this Friday, Ratheesh speaks to Express about the film.
The village of Kainakary, Kuttanad is the central focus of Moonnaam Pralayam. Explaining the film’s title, Ratheesh says, “The place having borne the brunt of numerous floods, among which are the three major floods of 1341, 1924 and 2018, we felt it was apt to name the film Moonaam Pralayam.”
The film, he adds, revolves around characters and situations happening inside a relief camp over the course of three days. “It’s about the religious divide and socio-political circumstances resulting from the compartmentalisation of various people coming from the state as well as outside.”
Asked why he chose to tell the story from the point-of-view of a Kuttanad-based relief camp, the filmmaker says, “Though relief camps are set up all over Kerala during such situations, a relief camp is an ever-present thing in Kuttanad. We are telling the stories of several occupants who have taken refuge there, and everything that’s part of the circle of life—birth, death, and so on—happens here too.”
The principal characters are played by Sai Kumar, Ashkar Soudan, Bindu Panicker, and Aristo Suresh among others. The film will also feature a host of real-life flood survivors who had been selected through an audition process. Sai Kumar plays a rich trader who, after losing everything in the flood, struggles to get accustomed to a life he is not familiar with. “A couple of inanimate objects are also characters in the film, such as a radio set and a candle, which hold special significance for their owners,” says Ratheesh.
Scripted by SK Vilwan, the film has been shot by Razak Kunnath and edited by Greyson. Devasia Kuriakose is producing it under the banner of Niagara Movies