Laadli Laila | by MURALI NAIR | Feature film | 2009 | India-France | 87 min | color
website : www.flyingelephant.co.uk/virgingoat/
Kalyan Singh, a stubborn middle class farmer, is in love with his pet, Laila, a goat. Is she virgin or not? After a treatment with strange pills, Laila comes on heat. Kalyan doesn't want to miss the opportunity to get Laila mated. But unfortunately for him, it has to be the day when a big leader is supposed to come to his small town. The authorities put various restrictions on his way to look for a billigoat. Surreal incidents happen around him, playing an active role in shaping up his fate.
Director: Murali Nair
Screenplay: Jonathan Page, Murali Nair.
Director of Photography: Sandeep Patil
Location Sound: Harikumar Madhavan Nair
Studio Sound Recordist: Madhu Apsara
Production Designer: Preeya Nair
Art Director: Alok Halder
Line Producer: Gurudas Pai
Editor: Emiliano Battista
Editing Supervisor: Franca Cereghini
Mix: Sanil P.K and Madhu Apsara
Music: Fardin Khalatbari
1st Assistants Director: Noélie Charles, Abbas Khan
Producers: Philippe Avril, Murali Nair
Cast: Raghubir Yadav (Kalyan Singh), Sheela Naidu (Kalyan’s wife), Saurab Gharipurikar (Son Madanlal), Purnima Maudgil (Daughter Meena), Archana Phadke (Maid Chinnu)
Production: Maya Films (India), Unlimited & Les Films de l’Etranger (France)
with the participation of ZDF/Arte
Supported by: Asian Film Fund, Göteborg Film Festival Fund, Global Film Initiative, Hubert Bals Fund, Région Alsace, Fonds Sud Cinéma
World Premiere: October 10, 2010,
Busan International Film Festival
Broadcasting: Channel Four and ARTE
Website : www.flyingelephant.co.uk/virgingoat/
ABOUT THE MOVIE
A carnivalesque satire about a farmer’s desperate struggle to get his goat pregnant, Virgin Goat by Murali Nair is colourful, funny and mostly hits all the right marks. (…) The film’s originality and humour should help to raise its profile among festivalgoers and art-house audiences.
Kalyan, a middle-aged farmer, loves his goat Laila more than anything in life, including his bickering wife and his good-for-nothing son. The last remaining animal of a lineage that stretches back 500 years, to a flock bestowed on his ancestors by the King, Laila will not produce any kids.
Finally, after a visit to a dodgy-looking veterinarian, Laila appears to go into heat, and Kalyan sets off with her across the city to a waiting billy goat. However a high-ranking politician is planning a major rally on that day, and the police begin blocking off the roads.
Without a doubt Virgin Goat’s biggest asset is the charismatic performance by lead actor Raghubir Yadav, who instils the character of Kalyan with enough life and charm to immediately pull viewers into his plight. The screenplay keeps him constantly agitated and moving, and especially in the film’s first half his exploits and encounters with various outlandish characters is funny and engaging.
The film (…) then takes on a more despairing tone as it moves into the latter reels, leaving the work with somewhat of an edge instead of the feel-good conclusion some might expect.
Cinematographer Sandeep Patil’s rich palette of saturated colours, and exaggerated costumes and makeup give the film a distinctive, memorable look.
(Darcy Paquet, Screen International, Oct. 15, 2010)