There may be no effect without a cause. And even ‘real-life heroes’ sometimes fail to foresee the consequences of their seemingly innocuous actions. Techie and short filmmaker Ratheesh CB’s short Moonnam Niyamam (The Third Law) shines a light on how we can unwittingly be our own nemesis through our thoughtless deeds. This message is conveyed through a heart-rending story highlighting the dangerous fallout of passive smoking.
The central character is a father who otherwise leads a content life with his wife and son only for his world to turn upside down when the boy is diagnosed with a serious illness.
“The idea for the story actually has autobiographical elements. I myself used to be a smoker till my late twenties until I faced a moment of fear when my son had to undergo some medical tests. Luckily, he is fine and I wanted to bring that self-realisation to the viewers as well,” says Ratheesh, working with an IT firm in Technopark.
Set in the capital city, Ratheesh says the short was shot in just a day. While his colleague Mani Nair, who played the lead in his two previous shorts Gathi and June 1, essays the protagonist in Moonnam Niyamam too, Ratheesh’s nephew plays the role of the child.
“The theme of passive smoking is only symbolic. This is where the title, an allusion to Newton’s third law that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction, becomes significant,” says Ratheesh.
The 16-minute-long film also attempts at differentiating knowledge as opposed to wisdom. “We know what should be done and what we should not as a society, preaching collective responsibility but succumb to our whims and fancies,” he says.
Ratheesh says that he loves to juggle his job and his passion for filmmaking. “My father is an artist and is into poster designing. So right from a young age, movies have been part of my life. However, more than the technical aspects, what attracts me more is the performance of the actors,” the 37-year-old says, adding that he attempts to bring this filmmaking view into his works too.
Currently on the short film festival circuit, Ratheesh plans to release Moonnam Niyamam on YouTube by January.