For years, Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code has been used to harass those who seek a lifestyle that diverges from the heavily normative heterosexual lifestyle. Despite there not being a law specifically against homosexuality, 377 has enough weight to severely impede and endanger the lives of those who are prevented from leading a peaceful life because of their sexual orientation or gender identification. The documentary follows the stories of the activists who sought to erase this horrible law, and the limitations, victories, and disappointments they faced while doing so. Not only do the people interviews touch on queer rights, but the film also heavily discusses colonialism, and the justice system in the country.
Although the fight for gay rights in India has received generous media coverage in Canada, it is an absolute privilege to be able to delve so deep into the workings of people who lived and still live the journey to equality first-hand. Filled with interviews and footage of scholars and activists, this documentary is truly enriched with information in order to provide a vibrant and multi-faceted outlook on the fight for equal rights in India. Despite the documentary feeling somewhat lengthy, it is very well worth it to be able to be exposed to so much information and so many points of view, which in western media very often get overlooked and oversimplified.
Rating: 7 / 10
Screening Time: Sunday June 1, 12:00pm @ TIFF Bell Lightbox Cinema 1