This morning after Mass, I went to see Black; it was named one (number 5) of the top ten movies of 2005 by Time’s Europe division. Basically the movie was about if Helen Keller was of Indian descent and Anne Sullivan was an older alcoholic male teacher who eventually develops Alzheimer’s disease.
It was a complete transformation from the wild girl in the beginning of the film who ate and acted like an animal to a woman who becomes the teacher to her teacher. To see her struggle to learn to communicate, to be a part of her family, for twenty years to achieve a normal university degree, to realize that she never experienced love that was more than familial or platonic, to see her teacher struggle was heartbreaking. Equally heartbreaking was to see a proud, intelligent man break down because of Alzheimer’s.
I was a little confused, because based on my limited knowledge of India, the McNally family is a Malayalam family (who would have used Malayali to take between themselves, not Hindi) and Sahai isn’t a Malayalam name, so they would be more likely to use English as a mutual language, not Hindi. the movie gives hints that the McNally family was Catholic (icons in the house, rosaries, paintings of saints, etc.) but the prayers and other behaviors are more Protestant than Catholic. It’s a really wonderful story that I think everyone will enjoy.