Meet Murthy, a postman in a picturesque village in India.
He’s an important man in a pre-Internet, pre-phone line community. He’s the guy working the information cables of the time, delivering messages from and to the outside world.
Being a postman was his life’s purpose.
He grows fond of an elderly grandmother who pines for her grandson, Murugan. And of course — the single ladies.
In a strange turn of events, Murthy finds himself impersonating Murugan to please the grandmother. Secondly and more importantly, this happens at the advent of the telephone in the village.
These two events seem to be out of Murthy’s control. As time passes, he loses his jolly demeanour and even looks at the telephone in disdain.
Will Murthy lose his job? Will the grandmother realise she’s been played?
This story was inspired by a real encounter, says the director B Manohar. There was a time when postmen were respected figures of the society. They didn’t just deliver letters; they were invited to sit and read these letters out aloud to the recipients.
Manohar realised this when he spoke to his own village postman, who related this about how technology changed his role in the community: “I have been a postman all my life and took pride in being a message bearer, but now nobody needs me.”
‘The Postman’ won multiple awards at film festivals in India, and was selected to screen at international film festivals in Poland, France, Germany, Romania, Italy, Greece, and Italy.
Here’s another film about the discomforts of modernity, ‘Penghulu’ — This village headman was an Very Important Person. He now lives in a HDB flat and hates it.