Bodies of Desire
Drama, 4 min
A lustful recollection of the journey to self discovery
Panikar’s poetry beautifully paints the landscape for a new normal
We all know the feeling of desire. The desire for love, for intimacy and ultimately, to be understood. Using their poetry collection by the same name, Varsha Panikar presents the visual spoken word poem, Bodies of Desire, alongside co-director Saad Nawab. The film itself follows four different couples in their own expressions of desire, creating an intimate portrait of the tenderness that can come alongside love and sex.
The film immediately opens by immersing the audience in a state of intrigue. The soundscape itself is hugely influential in this. From the get-go, the audience is opened to this hazy world filled with the humming of the lights and buzzing of a fly before the words of the poet takeover our attention. Through the playing of shadow and light we begin to see a woman’s own awakening within the intimacy of a lover; the memories evoked by the delicate touches, the shy kisses, and the tender embraces all become more and more illuminated throughout the short. The poet’s recollection in finding their muse, their love has enabled them in turn to love themselves.
The film leaves us with the final line, ‘Where does it start?’, an expression of hope. This is the beginning of Panikar’s new, happier, more fulfilled mindset within life. The film serves to show us that self love is really where all love spans from. To love someone else, we must fully love ourselves.
Overall this is must watch for those struggling themselves with self acceptance from the BFI Flare programme available free online in the UK 18-28 March 2021.
This article was written by:
Lauren Conlon Harper
Lauren's a media production student based in LJMU. Originally from Belfast, she first got into film at Queens Film Theatre's Takeover Festival where she planned and programed the annual event. She is an aspiring filmmaker / producer and aims to give those rarely heard a platform to tell their stories