‘(+ve) Frames' records how a mother and two children who are HIV-positive fight the odds.
It was a tiny article in a local newspaper that sparked the idea of a film in Anil Kumar P.Y. The report was on the travails of a family in Kottiyoor, Kannur, which was diagnosed as HIV-positive.
Reading this, Anil and his crew went to Kottiyoor. Expecting to meet a family that was burdened down by the news of their illness, what they met was quite the opposite – a mother and her two children, who were facing life head on. And that is the crux of the 37-minute documentary film ‘(+ve) Frames'.
Says Anil, who has directed the film: “Most people who are HIV-postive usually go into a state of depression. This woman, Rema, and her children, however, look at life from a positive angle; hence the title of the film, and what inspired us to make the film.”
However, things did seem bleak for the family when the villagers found out about their ailment and began ostracising them. The school the children were studying in discontinued their education.
Meeting Suresh Gopi
Says Venu Muttacaud, who wrote the script for the film: “It was Kottiyur panchayat president K.J. Joseph and actor Suresh Gopi who brought them hope. Joseph was failing in trying to dissuade the villagers from ostracising the family when he met Suresh at an event. He told him about the family and Suresh decided to pay the family a visit.”
The visit proved to be a life changing event for Rema and her children. Seeing the actor playing with the children, the villagers started treating the family better. The children were admitted to another school.
“It is fear due to a lack of awareness that causes society to shun people who are HIV-positive. Rema is now a ‘positive speaker.' She is not afraid to speak in public about her illness. And that is what we need, more and more people saying that it is not the end of the world if you are HIV-positive. People also need to know how AIDS spreads,” says Anil.
The film carries snippets of late HIV-positive crusader and social worker Veenadhari. “In fact, the film is dedicated to her. Our film is about life, women and empowerment, and it raises awareness on AIDS,” says Venu.
‘(+ve) Frames' is not Anil and Venu's first film together. The duo has worked together on two other documentaries: ‘Sorrow of Velayani' and ‘Socialist Life'. ‘(+ve) Frames' has been shot by Sunil Ganga. The film has been produced by Rajiv Gandhi Centre Social Vision.