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The Ebb Tide Renu Savant

Men, fish and a dying occupation at the coast of India. The director explores her homeland and portrays the village of Mirya in documentary and re-staged close-up and long-distance views.

The Ebb Tide

Documentary Film
60 minutes
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Public Service Broadcasting Trust
Renu Savant
Sunayana Singh
Rikhav Desai
Renu Savant
Ved Madesia, Sidardh Ramesh
Even in the Indian coastal town of Mirya, about 300 kilometres south of Mumbai, fishing is a dying occupation. The younger fishermen have high school diplomas but can’t find work – blame it on Prime Minister Modi. Buying a boat is being considered, even though the marine animals are becoming increasingly scarce. The big market is far away and selling locally is hardly worthwhile because prices are too high. A young woman follows a man, committed despite everything to catching crabs, into the dark and swampy mangrove forest.

“The Ebb Tide” is an exploration of home and the second film about her village by the young director Renu Savant who studied at the Film and Television Institute of India in Pune. Savant stages the residents on the waterfront by the bay. She makes the documentary abstract, has them read texts and people play roles that are close to their lives. With this hybrid approach she also reflects on her position as a director: close-ups and long shots of a familiar region that allows itself to be captured quite openly and in all its aspects. The mysterious imagery of this film, shot during the 2018 monsoon season, opens the viewers’ eyes to an unknown life and feeds them intellectually with knowledge about the multi-layered nature of the present.

Saskia Walker

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