December 04, 2011 Y. Sunitha Chowdhary
Every time his semi-art film gets critical acclaim at the film festivals but bombs at the box-office, a disappointed auteur Sunil Kumar Reddy says his next film will be an out and out commercial story but after a sabbatical gets his next hardcore social issue ready. After Sontha Ooru and Gangaputrulu, it is 'Criminals' which deals with teen sexuality, his anguish will be reflected in the film that revolves around youth. The shooting has begun in Visakhapatnam, his favourite city and the director has roped in all newcomers including the character artistes.
He talks about the emotions being corrupted, values being eroded in the guise of development and shows the parents point of view in a serious manner and the teen's point of view in a light-hearted way. "It is the story of three girls, one in the tenth, intermediate and the last studies in an engineering college. These girls represent the conflict that they go through in that particular age. They are best friends and the story is their journey.
I met many police officials, doctors and RMPs who conduct illegal abortions in the outskirts of the city. There is rampant use of contraception, even in school level that is from the sixth standard onwards. The gap between generations have widened considerably because of technology. Censoring has a low effect, teens have become net savvy and surf many porn sites, marriageable age is being delayed. Seventy percent of teens are trying to experiment in early stages because of the emotional problems."
Sunil Kumar Reddy says that the main part deals with parents who are not giving enough time to the children, instead compensating it with material comforts. "A boy told me he trapped 16 girls in six to seven months which included married women. He claims to have taken three days maximum to say the magical three words I Love You and maximum ten days to bed them and cyber crime and blackmail makes it easy.
We are under the impression that the children are happy. There is no melodrama. I believe that melodrama should happen in the minds of the artists. I didn't want any outburst, I wanted to give them a platform to communicate their frustration and angst to the society and their angst. The film has been tentatively titled Criminals because we are all passive criminals, it is a collective failure in the system."
The director further states that he is too conscious not to be vulgar and reveals astonishing and alarming data of teens terminating pregnancies twice, thrice hurting their reproductive system. He cites the example of a school in Delhi where the rest rooms are dumped with contraceptives and adds that our schools are not behind, they are pushing the matter under the carpet.
"There is no privacy, you are being watched as this is the curse of this technology. We should never expose yourself emotionally on Facebook lest someone might exploit you. All your sins are recorded, you are being observed. There is a dialogue in the film that a criminal says that he is not the disease, he is just a symptom, that sums up the story. Mosquitoes don't come from anywhere, they come from the trash we dump..all of us have slush on our hands."
Sunil Kumar Reddy laments the pressing urge to possess material wealth through the media that is creating a vaccum and says he is not rubbing his opinions but merely being honest showing the truth prevailing in our State.