KOCHI:Watching Memories of Morality will give you the chills. Shot on mobile camera and clocking 10 minutes, it shows how a young girl is harassed to death by random vigilantes, the self-appointed guardian’s of morality. Startlingly similar to a recent incident that led to the suicide of a young man, it opens with someone skimming through facebook pages and reading a news article. It’s about a suicide triggered by moral policing, the video taken during the incident going viral and the girl ending her life. A heart-wrenching tragedy in fact, but the man reading it promptly calls up his friend and asks him to share the video. “We are among people who celebrate a death by sharing the clip that caused it. More than the incident I was shaken by the way people were searching for the video looking for some titillating content. I think it’s an equally criminal act,” says Arunsol, director.
The short film chronicles a long sequence where an unruly crowd abuses and assaults the young couple, their behaviour beyond all limits of logic and decency. Their questioning session is so repulsive and their enragement quite out of context. From calling names and insulting the girl for her choice of man, they do everything short of violating her. “Another man tries to intervene and help the victims, but he is rudely shooed off. He is the voice of reason and asks them to call the police or contact their parents. But the group, in their angry fit, is not ready to listen,” he says. Memories of Morality doesn’t have any professional actors, “the artists are all my friends, people who were equally affected by the incident.”
Arun says his film is not inspired by a single incident, rather a volley of them. “And they haven’t stopped, they still continue despite all the disapproval. But what kind of inhuman beings can record such a thing and later circulate it?” He adds that the film is getting great feedback and he is happy about the way it’s forcing people to rethink. “After uploading the film I got so many calls and messages from people who used to share such clips. They said it was quite unnerving to watch the film and now they realise the insensitivity of their act,” he winds up.