It’s said that there are only a handful of stories and that any others are just a variation on them. Undoubtedly one of these rare originals is the Sanskrit tale, the Ramayana. From the chronicles of Rama – revolving around the abduction of his wife Sita and his quest for her return in which he is aided by his friend, the monkey king Hanuman – have evolved countless direct and indirect adaptations.
In Sita Sings the Blues, cartoonist Nina Paley has taken on the task of animating and recounting the epic and intertwining it with her own journey in and out of love and India. The film’s style fluctuates from figures reminiscent of Kara Walker cutouts to a Hindu Betty Boop.
Sita Sings the Blues opens today and plays until Dec. 31 at the IFC Center. Paley promises she’ll do Q & A’s at most, if not all, of the 8:25 p.m. shows. If you can’t make it, be grateful that she’s a believer in free distribution and you can watch Sita Sings the Blues online.