Set in rural South India, 15 year old Vanaja goes to work for the local Landlady in hopes of learning Kuchipudi Dance. Innocent chemistry with the Landlady's son turns ugly, pitching her into a battle of Caste and Animus.

Beautiful and heart-touching film from India, represents a miracle of casting... Domalpalli tells his story with tender precision, and never an awkward moment
— Roger Ebert, Pulitzer Prize Winning Film Critic






Watch the Film Here

Photo GallerES

Journal papers

"Vanaja" (more...) Chinnaiah Jangam, Department of History, Wagner College, Staten Island, USA, Journal of Visual Anthropology

“This issue of failed representation is reminiscent of Spivak’s influential essay, “Can the Subaltern Speak‌” Spivak argues that discursive attempts to speak for the subaltern often benefit the causes and interests of the supposed advocate, while reinforcing the subjectivity of the subaltern figure (Spivak 1985: 120-130)." (more...) Rajiv Kanan Menon, UNHEARD SCREAMS AND SILENT ACCEPTANCE: MODERN INDIAN CINEMATIC REPRESENTATIONS OF SUBALTERN WOMEN, in Widescreen Journal, Vol 1, No 1 (2009)