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Italian – English
Navert Film – RAI 3
Ilaria Freccia e M.E.Swarnavel
Valuthoor is a small village surrounded by the Western Ghats, the holy mountains of Tamil Nadu, in the south of India. Thangam is a thirteen years old girl, who like many other girls in her village works at the manufacturing of bidis, the small Indian cigars. Bidi rolling is one of the most popular cottage industry in India, according to the law children under the age of fourtheen should not be employed, but this law is continiously violated for various economical and social reasons. Life in Valuthoor has the rythme of season, the harvest and the sowing of rice. The only contact with the rest of the world is the radio on the main square. Agricolture is not only the basis of Indian economy, but also of its culture, and it’s in the villages that the arcaic system of social rules based on separatism between caste, arrange marriages ancient rituals are preserved. Thangam knows that her destiny is to work until she reaches maturity, then she will marry a man of her own cast, chosen by her parents. But Thangam can’t give up her need of freedom and one day she takes a decision that will make her grow a little… Thanks to a small, discreet Hi8 camera, Thangam has led us into her world of fantasies, fears and desires, allowing us to follow and capture the delicate passage between childhood and adolescence.