ottale

Ottal 2015 Indian Malayalam film directed by Jayaraj

This very beautiful film set in Kuttanad is heartbreaking but still full of nature’s pleasures. It evokes Pather Panchali in it’s simplicity. When people get educated or wealthy, they tend to their lose connection with the land and with humanity. That’s one of the themes and a question that’s been on my mind often lately.

Ottale’s rock-hard scaled belly is used for combing sea and lake-beds to dislodge shell-fish. They possess an adeptness for using tools and are deceptively strong due to an excess of muscle tendons. A single strike from an Ottale can crack even the hardest of objects, whether it is a clam or an enemy. Ottale can float for days, expending little energy as they travel from place to place. They often travel in pairs and hold hands so they don’t drift apart. Local folklore considers Ottale a messenger between humans and creatures.