Chuyia (Sarala) is an eight year old girl who has just lost her husband. She is deposited in the house of Hindu widows (an ashram) to spend the rest of her life in renunciation. There are 14 women who live in the house for Hindu widows, a small, dilapidated two-storey house built around a central courtyard.
As explained in the film, according to ancient texts a Hindu widow had three choices; she could join her husband on his funeral pyre, she could marry his younger brother (if available) or she could go into an Ashram (refuge) with other widows and live a life of self-denial to atone for the sin of having lost her husband.. It is the third option Chuyia (Sarala) takes on the death of her husband in 1938. Chuyia however being only eight years old, scarcely remembers getting married.
Chuyia forges a quick friendship with a young woman named Kalyani and by accident, both meet Narayana, who is taken with Kalyani. What he doesn't know is that she is being pimped to other men who will pay for her services and keep the ashram running by the monstrous Manorma, who runs the ashram like a brothel while preaching the laws of Manu. It's the double-standard of life in the ashram where the story denounces the atrocity of this "law": it forces women into a segregated society while the "prettier" ones are laid out as bait for those who will pay money for them. He and Kalyani do fall in love, but her situation is a barrier more to her than to him because she feels like damaged goods even when in an emotional scene he lets her know she is the one he loves.
What then follows will forever change their lives, and the life of little Chuyia.
The third film in her Elemental Trilogy - Fire and Earth precede it - Water is set against the epic backdrop of the River Ganges during Gandhi's rise to prominence. Chuyia (Sarala) is an eight-year-old child bride whose husband suddenly passes away. According to custom, her head is shaved and she is taken to an ashram for Hindu widows where she is expected to atone for the sins of her past that resulted in the death of her husband. It is a virtual exile, with no hope of escape. The ashram is full of other widows, old and young, all with their own stories, hopes and fears. Some of them have accepted their fate, others are bitter about their lot in life. The indefatigable Chuyia is left to navigate this world and learn its lessons.
The film is centred by the extraordinary performance of Sarala as the young Chuyia, a girl whose spirit remains unbroken. Her refusal to bend to her plight carries considerable emotive power and elevates Water from a harsh tale of deprivation into one of hope and the possibility of overcoming. Mehta has made a film for the ages.
FINALLY, [lol - Sorry, don't mean to make you wade through a lotta crap, but I know I like as much info as possible on a movie before I make the decision to spend my time downloading it] the ed2k link:
Like this post to see ed2k links [698.43 Mb]
This movie is available on DVD already, including a 2 DVD set that has BOTH the Hindi and the English versions [each scene was filmed twice...].
THIS link is the ENGLISH version.