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Watch on OTT this week: 5 modern masterpieces on SonyLIV that will expand your empathy

In this article, we've handpicked five modern masterpieces that will expand your capacity for empathy and compassion.

Watch on OTT this week: 5 modern masterpieces on SonyLIV that will expand your empathy
Movies to stream on SonyLIV.

Last Updated: 10.09 PM, May 03, 2023


Late iconic film critic Roger Ebert once described films as an "empathy machine." He was right: what good is a story if it doesn't transport us to a different world and allow us to live a variety of lives that our reality would not permit? As we get lost in the nitty-gritty of our daily problems, we often forget to appreciate the good things we have in life. Through stories, we realize how fortunate we are and begin to protect and enjoy our lives.

In this article, we've handpicked five modern masterpieces that will expand your capacity for empathy and compassion.

The Whale:


The Oscar-winning emotional drama The Whale portrays the life of a man, Charlie, who is consumed by self-pity, pain, and grief, as well as regrets. The story revolves around a 600-pound recluse who is estranged from his teenage daughter and is slowly eating himself to death. The movie showcases Charlie's desperate attempt to reconcile with his daughter before he dies. As he reaches out to his only friend Liz, their unlikely friendship transforms both of their lives forever. The movie dives deep into themes of loneliness, forgiveness, and redemption. The film is a powerful reflection on the human experience and the emotional toll that our choices can take on our lives. Written by Samuel D. Hunter, the movie is directed by the acclaimed director Darren Aronofsky. Brendan Fraser's stunning performance won him an Oscar, and the supporting cast including Samantha Morton, Sadie Sink, and Ty Simpkins deliver exceptional performances.

Everything Everywhere All at Once:

Empathy-inducing movies don't have to be emotionally heavy, as Everything Everywhere All at Once proves . This quirky and adventurous tale takes elements from the superhero genre and presents a refreshing take on the simple facts of life. The movie explores the idea that treating our enemies with kindness can make them disappear and that we can uncover the pain of others through our mind's eye. The story follows a woman named Evelyn Quan Wang, portrayed brilliantly by Michelle Yeoh, who discovers a connection to an infinite number of parallel universes. As she navigates through these universes, Evelyn encounters versions of herself and others who are similar yet vastly different. She discovers the choices and paths that led her to where she is and questions whether her current reality is the only one that exists. With stunning visuals and a unique storyline, Everything Everywhere All at Once is a must-see film that expands our understanding of the human experience.

Kadaisi Vivasaayi:

Kadaisi Vivasayi is a cinematic gem that takes a unique approach to storytelling. Unlike heavy dramas such as The Whale or eccentric movies like Everything Everywhere All at Once, director and writer Manikandan's film is a beautiful meditation on life, change, and tradition, wrapped in witty satire. The film follows the story of Sivasaamy, a lone farmer in a Tamil Nadu village where farming is a dying profession. Despite the hardships of old age and poverty, Sivasaamy remains steadfast in his mission to protect his small piece of farmland and irrigate it for future generations. The movie features an outstanding performance by Vijay Sethupathi, who portrays a man living on the fringes of society, yet deeply connected to his spirituality. Through its charming characters, gorgeous cinematography, and thought-provoking message, Kadaisi Vivasayi is a must-watch for cinephiles and anyone looking for a heartwarming story about preserving the planet and hope for the future. 


Movies can provide us with a much-needed perspective on social issues, especially during times of political turmoil and division. Bhonsle is a prime example of such a movie, a powerful and intimate drama that explores pressing issues of our times. The film revolves around a terminally ill Bhonsle, a retired Mumbai cop played with great finesse by Manoj Bajpayee, who lives a solitary life. When a young migrant girl named Sita and her younger brother move into the next-door apartment, they become Bhonsle's only companions. However, as the story unfolds, Bhonsle is faced with a moral dilemma, caught between his beliefs and his sense of right and wrong. The growing anti-migrant sentiment among his neighbours adds to the chaos. Through Bhonsle's struggles, the film touches on important social issues and emphasises the need for empathy in times of confusion and distrust. 


Ratheena's directorial debut, Puzhu, is an impressive and thought-provoking movie that delves into the complex topic of self-identity and external influences. The film revolves around Kuttan, a prejudiced man, and is narrated entirely from his perspective. The risky move pays off as the film does not try to sway the audience's opinion but leaves it to the viewers to form their own judgement. Mammootty delivers a nuanced and powerful performance, portraying Kuttan's misguided sense of righteousness and the horrible actions that come with it. The film also highlights the lasting effects of societal expectations and personal experiences, which shape our sense of self and beliefs. 

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