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Chai – Short Film
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Gitanjali Rao


The film is a sequence of montages that shows four different people making tea in a tea shop. A ten year old boy selling tea in Bombay at the Gateway Of India, An 18 year old girl with her tea shop in a mid level town, A 19 year old Kashmiri lad in a Barrista and An 80 year old man’s tea shop in a busy Kerala bus stand.

Through a series of sensuous shots that celebrate the process of making tea and everything that goes into it, and a series of painted graphics that recreate their thoughts, we get four different points of view of life. That of an innocent 10 year old who has escaped a violent life in his village, a spirited girl who has shunned child marriage, a slightly bitter yet adventurous Kashmiri boy who has escaped a false charge of stone pelting and an old wise though cynical Malayali who is skeptical of rapid change. The very same change, that the three youngsters pursue. And all this, over a cup of tea. While the youngest boasts that the British too came to India over a cup of tea, the oldest believes that tomorrow any way starts like yesterday and the day before- over a cup of tea.

The film is a view of rapid change that India is going through and what it means to those people whose faces we never notice as we go along sipping our cup of tea everyday. Tea like the people of India changes with every language, culture, climate yet serves the same purpose everywhere always. A constant in a flux.

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