Daya (1998)

Run Time - 150 min.  |   Countries - India   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Gönül Dönmez-Colin

An escapist period piece, Daya is about the adventures of a lively and intelligent slave girl. Mansoor, the son of an aging and wealthy nobleman, is used to an extravagant way of life. Squandering his wealth after his father's death, he is forsaken by all his friends, except the loyal slave girl, Daya, who suggests that she be sold at the slave market for an exorbitant price. The envoys of the King interrupt the sale and take Daya to court, where she is showered with gifts. The King also allows her to live with Mansoor. But wild adventures never leave her alone, and she is even forced to masquerade as a man. The film, which did badly at the Indian box office, is saved by its good technical qualities. The director won the Kerala State Award 1999 for Best Directorial Debut, with the jury finding it a "thoroughly enjoyable cinematic experience," and the film also won Best Editing, Best Costumes, Best Art Direction, and Best Screenplay Awards from the State of Kerala. However, critics generally found the script weak while praising the visual talents of the cinematographer, Sunny Joseph. It was screened at the 4th International Film Festival of Kerala, 1999.



girl, king, Native-American, slavery, wealth