Actress Maya Karin comes to the defence of rape scene

PETALING JAYA - Silver screen darling Maya Karin has come to the defence of a much-talked about rape scene in the blockbuster movie Ombak Rindu which has garnered her both fame and fortune.

Maya plays the role of a naive and genteel village damsel called Izzah who is sold into prostitution and is raped by her first client who eventually falls passionately in love with her.

Although the poignant book-turned-movie received rave reviews, critics say the rape scene glorified the brutal and dehumanising act.

Maya begs to differ.

"Filmmaking involves portraying what really can happen out there.

"While there are strong women who fight back when mistreated, there are also girls who are vulnerable and powerless.

"There are also girls like Izzah who get trapped, tricked and drugged. Every movie cannot possibly be about women fighting back and winning," she said.

In the movie, Maya's character Izzah, who is sold to a prostitution den by her uncle, is "purchased" by rich playboy Hariz (Aaron Aziz) after he rapes her in a brothel.

His initial intention was for her to be his mistress but as time passes, Hariz falls for Izzah.

While some may question the possibility of love blossoming between such a pair, Maya said movies must not be over analysed.

"A feature film contains elements of fantasy and is all about entertainment.

"Only movie critics don't watch movies as pure entertainment because it's their job.

"If you want 100% accurate stuff, turn to documentaries instead," she said.

Criticism aside, it has been a good four months into the year for Maya as she rides the waves of success after Ombak Rindu grossed over RM11mil at the box office since its release last year.

Maya's popularity and bankability has since been soaring to new heights with movie offers pouring in.

One of the three movies lined up for the 32-year-old this year will see her reuniting with Ombak Rindu director Osman Ali, while another is by award-winning local filmmaker Shuhaimi Baba.

Maya said her success with Ombak Rindu not only brought her professional gain, but also personal growth.

She cited her character Izzah as an inspiration.

"I try to maintain as many qualities that I've learnt from her, such as calmness, patience, perseverance and a positive attitude," she said.

As for her personal life, the Germany-born beauty, whose marriage with British teacher Steven David Shorthose ended in 2010, said she was ready to start dating again.

"I'm ready to meet new people and go for dinner dates," she said.

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