Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Netflix It: Sita Sings the Blues

Available on Netflix, or free on the film's website: Sita Sings the Blues, written and directed by Nina Paley

Synopsis from

Two women having troubles with their men, separated by several centuries, find their stories coming together in this animated comedy-drama from artist and animator Nina Paley. A female cartoonist moves from the United States when her husband gets a new job in India. While acclimating to her new life in India, the cartoonist becomes fascinated with the Hindu folk tale "the Ramayana," in which a beautiful woman named Sita, who was created spontaneously from the Earth, is adopted by King Janaka, pledged to a brave warrior named Rama, and is kidnapped by the demonic leader Ravana. Sita's story is given two visual interpretations at once -- a visually striking abstract version and another which employs a whimsical, cartoony approach and uses vintage recordings of jazz singer Annette Hanshaw for Sita's voice. As the film jumps back and forth between two adaptations of the Ramayana, the cartoonist discovers that her sojourn in India has taken a turn for the worse when her husband falls in love with another woman. Sita Sings The Blues was an official entry at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival.

In a word: trippy. Nina Paley is just as creative with her take on copyright law, as she explains on the film's website.

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