This article was originally published on October 5, 2013. TamilCulture is pleased to share that “A Gun & A Ring” will be playing at Cineplex Cinemas at Scarborough Town Centre and Colossus Vaughan Cinemas, starting on Friday September 5th. The team behind the film has been working diligently with Cineplex to arrange to have it released through their box-office system in Toronto and invites you to catch it on the big screen! The film will run for a minimum of a week, and longer depending on its reception.
A gun and a ring, two seemingly unrelated objects become intertwined in unexpected ways in Lenin M. Sivam’s latest film. Shot over two weeks, on a budget of $100 000, the film has been making its mark, already having been screened in international festivals in Shanghai, Montreal and most recently at a packed Toronto premiere.
The powerful portrayal of Tamil Canadians struggling to reconcile the lives they’ve left behind in Sri Lanka with the obstacles that they contend with in Canada, is honest, raw and inspired in part by the controversial British documentary “Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields”.
“The civil war has always been a part and parcel of my conscience and experiences…“A Gun & A Ring” is my attempt, difficult as it may be to watch for some, to show the impact of the war and its bloody end on the Tamil Canadian diaspora.”- Lenin M. Sivam
A Gun and A Ring forces us to recognize challenges that the diaspora faces, but are rarely addressed openly. At the same time, the film shows us that this is only a microcosm for many different groups of people who have sought refuge in Canada.
The father who’s left everything behind so that he may raise his daughter in a place that’s better for her. The young man who can’t shake the memories of his life during the civil war, struggling to make peace with his past. The family that is caught in limbo, unable to recognize or accept why their son took his own life. The woman who hoped for a new beginning in Canada, and takes a marked departure from the narrative that a happy ending is in arranged marriage.
These are but a few of the thirty characters depicted in the film, which was shot in fifty-two locations across Toronto. Lenin’s characters, and the story lines that centre upon each of their lives, are skillfully woven together spanning decades, generations and nations.
The film’s illustrations of struggles with mental health, violence, pedophilia and post traumatic stress are striking and disconcerting. Though Lenin is subtle and careful in his treatment of these topics, crafting scenes that depict them through suggestion and implication, their impact is no less. The layering of the storylines, increases the intensity with which each is experienced throughout the film. And this is what ultimately makes the contrasting depictions of hope in the midst of darkness, that has taken over many of the characters’ lives, all that more impactful.
“Random acts prove to be fateful coincidences that lead to deadly consequences for some yet hopeful beginnings for others.” – Lenin M. Sivam
A Gun and A Ring, as its name suggests, is a story of destruction and devastation, hope and faith. A powerful reminder, that there is beauty in the midst of, not in spite, of suffering and pain. And that new beginnings are possible if you have the courage to believe in and pursue them.