To survive Covid, NETPAC’s USA chapter, headed by academic and filmmaker, Vilsoni Hereniko, started a monthly online film discussion. NETPAC members would pick a film for viewing each month and a virtual discussion would take place at month’s end. Last month (July 2021), filmmaker Patricia Gillespie picked The Salt in Our Waters (2020), directed by Rezwan Shahriar Sumit (Bangladesh) that won the NETPAC award at the Kolkata Film Festival 2021, when she presided on the jury there. You can enjoy their discussion here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1i_WTPT6MBvNgKt9RawjgDxmpAKLaVkAQ/view?usp=sharing
Plus you can catch enjoyable cameos from the legendary Sri Lankan film academic and book author, Wimal Dissanayake, and the founder of the Hawaii Int’l Film Festival, Jeannette Hereniko.
About the Film:
The Salt in Our Waters is a beautifully shot film about an educated, city sculptor who moves to a remote fishing village on the Ganges Delta. At first, he is warmly greeted by the villagers - until he opens his huge container with all of his work and art supplies. The villagers see his work of sculptures and think they are idols. The village women, except for Tuni, his landlord’s spirited daughter, won’t speak to him. The children, though, are enchanted when he makes them flying fish. The villagers depend on their daily fishing haul, but when fish is scarce, the self-serving village Chairman who keeps the men indebted to him, says the artist has cursed them. The artist tries to explain global warming and rising sea levels but no one understands what he says. A tragic event and a cyclone bring events to a head. This film deals with several issues that affect not only village but the world too: tradition vs. modernity, science vs. religion, politics vs. the will of the common man. The Salt in Our Waters is beautifully shot, and the costumes of women set against the background of the sea and village are truly exquisite. The acting, too, is remarkable, with top Bangladesh star, Fazlur Rahman Babul playing the Chairman. This is up-and-coming director Rezwan Shahriar Sumitʻs first feature.