“Ladies and Gentlewomen” a Tamil language, Indian groundbreaking documentary by Malini Jeevarathnam is the first ever lesbian movie in that language. It is an attempt to break the silence about the dynamics of lesbianism and covers love, life, but also suicide among lesbians in that country.
While researching for the film, Malini met around 85 women from the queer community but many were not ready to talk about their sexuality in front of the camera. In fact, she is on record saying that her main intention in making the documentary was to bring focus to the suffering and deaths of LGBT people. The film premiered at the Chennai Rainbow Film Festival in Chennai on 8 January 2017 where it won the Best Documentary Award.
Hopefully, this very important film about the plight of Indian lesbians will surface in US Film Festivals soon. meanwhile here’s a rather beautiful ‘Lesbian Anthem’ that was made for inclusion in the documentary.