Tue Steen Müller on kirjoittanut omassa blogissaan ( www.filmkommentaren.dk) intialaisen Souravin dokumentista Bilal, jonka osatuottajana on toiminut Kristiina Pervilä Millennium Filmistä
Bilal is a boy, whose parents are blind and have a hard life in a poor area of Calcutta. For a year the director has followed the little boy stumbling into the world as any other child does, who is not born with a silver spoon in hand. He has a smaller brother, who has to suffer from some beatings of the older Bilal, as small brothers normally do. It is laughter and crying, shouting and teasing, and learning in school and at home, where the blind parents do an unbelievingly beautiful job to bring up two seeing children. The father had a phone booth close to home, but it was closed and he ended up having heavy debt but they cope, probably due to help from the family that lives – literally – next door, and due to the return to serving a public street phone seems to happen.
The director manages to lift this film from being just-another-film-about-poverty to something universal about childhood to identify with, told from a humanistic point of view, where you can not help fall in love, as the director did, with the boy who ends the film having a circumcision done - ”they cut my dick”, he says to his father. Banal you might say, yes it is, as the observational documentary is at its best. With a calm rythm where you almost sense the days just going on and on, as they do for a child and his family. And thematically I got to think about the trilogy about Apu, by Satyayit Ray. I wish all the best for Bilal, and please follow him with the camera in the years to come!
The film had its premiere at idfa 2008. Supported by Jan Vrijman Fund and YLE.