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પ્રેમચંદ મુન્શી ની વાર્તા નિર્મલા ની સમીક્ષા – #Gujarati & English Review of Premchand Munshi’s Nirmala


પ્રેમચંદ મુન્શી ની વાર્તા “નિર્મલા” ધારાવાહી ની સમીક્ષા

Munshi Premchand: a prolific Indian writer – EDUpub

પ્રેમચંદ મુન્શી હિન્દી સાહિત્યના ખુબ મોટા અને જાણીતા સાહિત્યકાર રહ્યા છે. તેઓ એક નિષ્ણાત અને વિશેષજ્ઞ વાર્તાકાર છે અને તેમની વાર્તાઓ ધારાવાહી સ્વરૂપે યૂટ્યૂબ માં જોઈ શકાય છે. વાર્તામાં બોધ હોય તે બાળકોને ગમે પણ મોટાઓને તેવી વાર્તાઓ પસંદ ન પડે. પરંતુ મુન્શીજી એ પ્રકાર ના વાર્તાકાર છે કે તેમની વાર્તામાં બોધ હોય પરંતુ તેઓ ક્યારેય તે બોધ ને સમજાવતા નથી. વાંચનાર પોતાની મેળે અને પોતાની સમજ પ્રમાણે પુરેપુરો બોધ તારવે કે થોડો તારવે કે જરાય નહિ તે વાંચનાર ઉપર છે.

નિર્મલા કરીને તેમની વાર્તા છે જેમાં એક 45 જેટલી ઉંમરના વિધુર એક નાની 17વર્ષ જેવડી કન્યા જોડે વિવાહ કરે છે અને આર્થિક મુશ્કેલી માં પડેલી મા તે વિવાહ કબુલ કરે છે. આ સાન 1925માં લખાયેલ આ વાર્તામાં તેમની સુધારાવાદી કાર્યસૂચિ દેખાય છે. લગ્ન કરનાર વિધુર ના 5, 8 અને 15 વર્ષ જેવડા ત્રણ છોકરા છે. નિર્મલા વિધુર જોડે ખુબ વિનયથી વાત કરે છે પણ તેમનાથી અળગી રહે છે. ત્રણ છોકરાઓની તે ખુબજ સંભાળ રાખે છે અને ત્રણેય છોકરાઓ તેને મા કહીને સંબોધે છે. છોકરાઓ જોડે નિર્મલા નો સબંધ ઔપચારિક નથી અને સરખી ઉમર ને કારણે તેઓ એકબીજા જોડે ચર્ચા અને મસ્તી મજાક કરે છે અને 15 વર્ષના છોકરા પાસે નિર્મલા અંગ્રેજી શીખે છે. પોતાના 15 વર્ષના છોકરાને નિર્મલા સાથે જોઈને વિધુરને ઈર્ષા આવે છે અને તે છોકરાને હોસ્ટેલ માં મોકલે દ્યે છે જ્યાં પૌષ્ટિક આહાર ન મળવાથી અને બીમારીમાં બરોબર સારવાર ન મળવાને કારણે છોકરો જીવન મરણ વચ્ચે જોલા ખાય છે. ત્યારે વિધુર નિર્મલા ને આજીજી કરે છે કે તું છોકરાની જોડે કૈક વાત કર અને હોસ્પિટલ ના કાર્યકર્તાઓને કહે છે કે આ તેની મા છે. વિધુર ના એ બે વાક્યમાં કરુણા વહે છે અને વાચકો તારવી શકે છે કે વિધુર છોકરો ગુમાવવાની અણી ઉપર આવ્યા છે અને તેમને પોતાની ભૂલો સમજાય છે.

1920 થી 1940 ના સમય દરમ્યાન ભારતીય સમાજ માં સુધારાવાદી પરિવર્તન ની જરૂર હતી તે મુન્શીજી ની વાર્તાઓ માં દેખાય છે. બોધ આપ્યા વગર, સામાજિક માન્યતાઓ, ધોરણો અને સામાજિક વાતોને મુન્શીજી એ પ્રમાણે રસિક રીતે રજુ કરે છે કે તેમની વાર્તાઓ આજે પણ વાચકોને પસંદ આવે છે. તેમની વાર્તાઓમાં ગામડાઓના ઠાકુરો અને બ્રાહ્મણ પંડિતો દ્વારા થતું ગરીબ ખેડૂતો અને કામદારોનું શોષણ, અસ્પ્રુશ્યોની સાથે થતો અન્યાય અને ઉતરતી ગણાતી સ્ત્રીઓની સાથે થતી કરુણ ઘટનાઓ જોવા મળે છે.

Short English Synopsis Of Premchand Munshi’s Nirmala on Youtube

Premchand Munshi has been an incredible and excellent storyteller. He wrote in Hindi, during 1920s to 1940s time frame. In his stories, Munshi shined a light on subjugation and plight of women, exploitation of poor farmers and daily wage workers by wealthy landowners and learned Brahmins and holy men in the villages and inequities and abuse suffered by the untouchables.

In his short story, Nirmala which is available on Youtube, Munshi shines a light on plight of women. About 16 or so years old poor girl is married off to a widower of her father’s age. Widower has three boys, ages 5, 8 and 15. Nirmala is very respectful towards her husband but she is uncomfortable with intimacy, is formal with him and maintains some distance. She takes very good care of the three boys and they are also respectful towards her and address her as a mother. However, being of similar age, the boys are also close to her and joke with her and she is also trying to learn English from 15 year old. When the father sees his own son with his young wife, in jealous rage, he sends his son away to a hostel. Due to non-nutritious food and illness, son falls ill and is on the verge of dying. At that time, the widower requests Nirmala to talk to the son in the hope that maybe he may respond to her and he explains to the hospital personnel that Nirmala is their mother. In two simple sentences at the end, uttered with distress and shame, one can see the regret that the father is feeling due to his various mistakes, when he is on the verge of losing his beloved elder son.

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Lost in Many Faces of Gods – #Poem


My neighbor comes out every morning to cut beautiful roses and other flowers growing outside her house and she collects them to offer them to God. After seeing this scene again and again, this poem is written.

I don’t know O God, your wishes
Based on my understanding, I thee worships

I cut beautiful flowers from your creation
And offer them to photo frames of my vision

In many faces, I have imagined you
To please you, many rituals I do

Sometimes in scary image of Goddess Kali
I’ve feared your wrath and offered havana nightly

Krishna, Murti, God, Hindu, Indian

Or I fast for nine days in honor of demon-slayer Maa Durga
And begin my days with prayers to kind and portly Lord Ganesha

I have sought you in neutral face of Lord Mahavira
Or in wise verses of Lord Buddha

Sometimes I seek you in a mosque without an image or fuss
And sometimes your love bleeds from an object, a cross

In many rituals, fasts, prayers and customs I have tied you
And bound myself in fortified walls of bigotry, all for you

Which of you is real, I am lost in your many faces,
All of my own making, I’m lost in rituals and customs

But I forget the face that is in front on me everyday
When snakes slither, cows moo, when goats bray

When peacock puts on an amazing display
To win his beloved, when I see chimps tease and dolphins play

When autumn showers gold, in awe I say, it’s not the doom
Hope is rekindled when spring flowers bloom

And yet spring is no more a start than autumn an end
I find summer glow of my soul in desolate winter or barren desert sand

I don’t know of many Gods, or of A God or A Goddess
And yet I see everyday how the divine reveals

There is presence of the divine all around
On this wondrous earth and in the galaxy beyond

I looked in temples, churches and mosques….
In the end, I found divine within my heart, Rumi says

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ईश्वर के कई चहेरे मेरी फोटो फ्रेम में – #Hindi #Poem


I have written this poem in English, Hindi and Gujarati and am posting in all three languages. Each time the words are slightly altered.

मेरी पड़ोस में रहती हुई महिला रोज बहार आकर अपने घर के पास उगते हुए सुंदर गुलाब और अन्य फूलों को काटकर अपनी पूजा की थाली में इकट्ठा करके घर ले जाती है। इस दृश्य को बार बार देखने के बाद  यह काव्य लिखा है 

मुझे नहीं पता हे ईश्वर आपकी क्या मर्जी है
आपको भजति हु जैसी मेरी समज होती है  

आप के ही सर्जन के सुंदर फूल चुनकर  
अपने  मातापिता सामान पौधों से अलग कर 

प्रस्तुत करती हूँ आप ही की सुन्दर छबि के सामने 
आपके कई चहेरे मैंने फोटो फ्रेम में उतारे है 

कभी सोचा आप को, डरावने माँ काली के रूप में
कभी अनुरागशील गणेशजी और कभी मां दुर्गा के स्वरूप में

कभी बुद्ध और महावीर के तटस्थ चेहरे में पाया 
कभी बिन चहेरे आपको मस्जिद में मेने पाया 

मेरे ठहराए गए रस्मो कस्मो से आपको बांध लिया  
कभी फल खाकर कभी रोजा रखकर आपको प्रसन्न किया  

कभी इशू के क्रॉस पर लहू में आपकी दया को देखकर
कभी कृष्ण की बांसुरी की ध्वनिमें आपकी भक्ति में रंगकर 

खोजने आपको मंदिर मस्जिद चर्च और कहाँ कहाँ भटकी  
अलग अलग नियमो और रस्मो से में परेशान हुई 

मैंने अपनी कल्पना से तुम्हारे कई चेहरे गढ़े हैं
पर भूल जाती हु वोही चेहरा जो मेरे सामने है

Various dance poses of an Indian Male Peacock stock photo

मोर की कला, तेंदुए की दौडान, मेंढक की छलांग
सिंह का गुर्राना कोयल के टहूके, पंखी का कलरव 

कोयल के टहूकने में, भमरे के भनभनानेमें, 
आप को पा लू में फुलोके खिलने और मुर्झानेमे  

मैं छवि में आपका चेहरा क्यों बनाऊ 
रस्मो रिवाजमे क्यों हैरान हो जाऊ 

अलौकिक, आपकी यह रचना अमृतमयी
मान क्यों न लें कि यही आपकी पुष्टि आपकी छवि

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Hindi Review: Premchand Munshi’s Tehrir Godaan गोदान


प्रेमचंद मुंशीजी की गोदान पर आधारित “तहरीर” धारावाहिक की समीक्षा 

“गोदान” मुंशी प्रेमचंद का एक प्रसिद्ध हिंदी उपन्यास है। सन १९३६ में प्रकाशित हुआ यह उपन्यास हिंदी साहित्य के महान उपन्यासों में गिना जाता है। यह उपन्यास की बात करने से पहले मुंशीजी के बारे में थोड़ी बाते करते है. हिंदी साहित्य की दुनिया में मुंशी जी का स्थान बहोत उत्कृस्ट लेखकों में है. उन्होंने लिखे हुए उपन्यासमे गोदान, कर्मभूमि, गबन, मानसरोवर, ईदगाह जैसी प्रसिद्ध और लोकप्रिय किताबे शामिल है. उन्होंने १२ से अधिक प्रसिद्द किताबे लिखी है और ३०० से ऊपर छोटी कहानिया लिखी है और उनकी किताबो का अंग्रेजी और कई विदेशी भाषाओंमे अनुवाद किया गया है.     

सन १९६३ में “गोदान” के ऊपर हिंदी चलचित्र बनाया गया था जिसमे राज कुमार, कामिनी कौशल, महमूद और शशिकला ने अभिनय किया है. 

सन 2004 में, मुंशीजी की गोदान के ऊपर आधारित,  गुलज़ार द्वारा निर्देशित, टीवी श्रृंखला, “तहरीर” दूरदर्शन के ऊपर पेश की गई थी जिसमे पंकज कपूर और सुरेखा सीकरी ने अभिनय किया है. 

Nature, Kokan, Sindhudurg, Goa, Farmer, Green

यह 1930 के दशक के ग्रामीण भारत में बस्ते हुए किसानों के जीवन पर केंद्रित एक उत्कृष्ट कहानी है। ये गरीब और बड़े पैमाने पर अशिक्षित किसान गरीबी और कर्ज के चक्र में फंसे हुए हैं। जमींदार, ठाकुर, पंचायत के सदस्य और ब्राह्मण पुजारी सहित उच्च वर्ग के विभिन्न सदस्य इस तथ्य का लाभ उठाते हैं कि किसान उनकी बड़ी इज्जत करते हैं और उनका गहरा सम्मान करते हैं। वास्तविक और काल्पनिक अपराधों के लिए, किसानों पर जुर्माना लगाया जाता है, उनके जानवरों (और कभी-कभी उनके खेतों) को अत्यधिक ब्याज दरों पर दिए गए ऋण के बदले में जब्त कर लिया जाता है. इस प्रकार पीढ़ियों से गरीबी का चक्र जारी रहता है। कभी-कभी ये किसान ईर्ष्या के कारण अपने ही वर्ग के सदस्यों का निशाना भी बन जाते हैं. और जब एक किसान पूरी तरह से कर्ज में डूब जाता है और उस गरीब आदमी से निकालने के लिए कुछ भी नहीं बचा है, जिसने अपनी युवावस्था खो दी है तभी उसे अपनी प्यारी जवान बेटी की शादी बूढ़े आदमी से कराने के लिए प्रेरित किया जाता है। 

यह धारावाहिक विशेष रूप से एक किसान होरीराम और उसकी पत्नी धनिया और उनके तीन बच्चों के इर्द-गिर्द केंद्रित है। किसान होरीराम की भूमिका में पंकज कपूर और उनकी पत्नी धनिया की भूमिका में सुरेखा सीकरी का अभिनय अति उत्कृर्ष्ट और शानदार है. 

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Buddha – Play Review


Buddha, Naatak’s grand musical in the park in San Jose is written and directed by the brilliant Sujit Saraf.  Producer and dance director is Soumya Agastya and Music Direction is by Nachiketa Yakkundi

The play is set in the sixth century BCE and viewers are given a booklet written in English, with full text of the music and brief descriptions of all that transpires in between. 

May be an image of 8 people and people standing

Siddharth Gautam was born in a land known as Madhyam Desh (most likely today’s Nepal) at a time when aside from Ved, only about five Upanishads had been composed and the epics Ramayan and Mahabharat had not yet come into existence. This was not a time when there was a great deal of conformity of thought and beliefs. Atheists, ascetics, heterodox thinkers and others subscribed to their own version of good, bad, evil and virtuous, while Brahmanical Hinduism was a weaker sect among others.

Siddhartha was born a prince and could not find contentment in his easy going life. When he witnessed suffering, death and disease, he was deeply moved and set about trying to find enlightenment and gave up his lavish lifestyle. When poverty and suffering also failed to bring peace then he promoted the “middle way”, existing between two extremes, a life without indulgences but also without deprivation.   He preached attainment of enlightenment through achieving morality, meditation, and wisdom. One can say that it was one of the first attempts at religion through spirituality, and minus the invention of a deity.

Following Buddha’s death, his disciples gathered to jot down Buddha’s spiritual journey and his path to enlightenment under the Peepal tree and to compile his teachings. The play is largely based on what emerged in these compilations.

Naatak’s play attempts to capture Buddha’s spiritual journey, almost 2,500 years ago, through a combination of songs, captivating dances and dialogues, written entirely in rhyme, in “prachin” hindi.. The play is performed outdoors in the shade of giant maple and oak trees, in San Jose, CA.

For tickets, please go to www.naatak.org .

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Ek Tha Gaddha – Naatak Play Review


May be an image of 7 people, people standing and outdoors

Ek tha gaddha urf Aladad Khan is a brilliant satire, penned by Shard Joshi. Vain and narcissistic leaders always provide much fodder to artists, writers, and performers.  The play begins with a foolish Nawab on the lookout for a perfect opportunity to provide help to his subjects. His search for this opportunity has less to do with genuinely helping his people and is more about satiating his oversize desire to attain glory and get his name entered into history books.

Naatak, a prominent and largest Indian theater company in the United States, has performed for over 25 years and their plays have been seen by more than a hundred thousand people. Naatak has been declared Best Live Theatre in Silicon Valley by the San Jose Mercury News for the past six years in a row. After closing due to the pandemic, Naatak opened for live performances, at the outdoor amphitheater in San Jose, with Ek Tha Gaddha, with the lead role played by none other than fabulous and beloved Harish Agastya

No court of a foolish leader is complete without philosophers who adorn the court, primarily to sing praises of the king and discuss and opine over a myriad of silly issues. Chintaks played by Tannistha Mukherjee, Jai Jhala, and Rohit Dube looked hilarious discussing with great seriousness such matters as whether the time arrived before them or they arrived before time.  Natraj Kumar as Kotwaal carried out his tasks of announcing the king’s arrival and his declarations with a proper air of haughty arrogance. Roshni Datta was marvellous in her role as Kotwal’s girlfriend, Ramkali. 

May be an image of 6 people, including Harish Sunderam Agastya, people standing and outdoors

Dhoban, Anjali Kirloskar was genuinely grieving her beloved donkey Aladad Khan’s passing. However, Nawab was led to believe that Aladad Khan was a poor but much loved citizen. Nawab decided to use the opportunity to get involved, make speeches and mark his death with a national period of mourning. Thus progresses the play with song, dance and rambunctious humor. Gullible citizens are taken for a ride in this hilarious play, even as we get to witness the brute power of the state. 

To get tickets for this not-to-miss post pandemic play, performed in Hindi, go to www.naatak.org .

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Guilty – Bollywood Movie Review


“Guilty” is a Hindi Bollywood movie directed by Ruchi Narain and written by Ruchi Narain, Kanika Dhillon and Atika Chohan. Released in 2020, it focuses on the events that transpired at the peak of the #MeToo movement, in 2018. 

Guilty movie review: A lost opportunity | Entertainment News,The Indian  Express

Nanki (Kiara Advani) writes lyrics for a band in which her boyfriend, VJ Pratap Singh (Gurfateh Singh Pirzada) is the lead singer. While the upper class, English speaking hot couple inspire jealousy and admiration from their classmates, Tanu (Akanksha Ranjan Kapoor), a Hindi speaking girl from Dhanbad, who openly hits on VJ, then accuses him of raping her as his friends watched on. The accusation comes via a tweet that leads to a social media storm with appropriate hashtags. 

As is often the case in Indian society, everyone gets involved with half baked partisan opinions and judgments. The college students are divided; with many accusing Tanu for her flirtatious come-ons and revealing clothing, while others stand by her and participate in protests in her defense. Same is true in VJ’s case and he also has support of his politically connected parents, powerful politicians and socialites.

At no point, has the film lost sight of the fact that this is a complex matter. Even as you get manipulated into judging the characters and as the story begins to unravel you change sides several times, you also begin to realize how nuanced gender power issues are. You grapple with issues such as, should a girl be  judged for being flirtatious, accused of inviting unwanted sex; could she have sex with someone she craves and then cry rape; can an upper class young man who has the attention of hottest girl on campus force himself on any other girl, could he have had  consensual sex and then be accused of rape for profit and attention; could these issues be quashed with money and pressure? 

The film focuses on the crucial subject matter, very pertinent in Indian society and it certainly brings forth some key issues into the forefront like this is a subject matter for the society to tackle, instead of putting entire responsibility on women and slut-shaming or blaming women for clothing choices, and treating women with paternalistic condescending advice on how to protect themselves. However, as much of the movie focuses on he said, she said narrative, it does not move the dialog forward with confidence. While it covers the intellectual and moral basis of arguments, it does so with some trepidation, not with authority. 

Despite some of its flaws, Guilty inspires discussion on an extremely pertinent subject, deeply interwoven with culturally prescribed gender roles. I rate the movie 4.2 on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being excellent.

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Pagglait – Bollywood Movie Review


Majority of Bollywood movies used to have a lot of fluff (silly song and dance numbers and silly dialogs to fill up time). But Pagglait movie written and directed by Umesh Bist is a work of genius. Almost everything gives a deep insight into something; there’s family gossip, financial wranglings and machinations, religious dogma and casteist beliefs and rituals, and a recently widowed woman who had not known love in her marriage but was left with more questions and confusion, after the death of her husband. All of this is packed into one story.

Pagglait trailer: Comedy and death combine in Sanya Malhotra's quirky  Netflix film | Entertainment News,The Indian Express

Heroine Sandhya Giri (Sanya Malhotra) is brilliant in her understated emotions and dialogs. She lost her husband Astik Giri soon after their marriage. Sandhya confesses to her friend Nazia (Shruti Sharma) “बचपन में हमारे पास एक बिल्ली थी. कार  के निचे आ गयी. हम बहुत रोए थे यार. वैसा कुछ भी नहीं लग रहा है. रोना भी नहीं आ रहा है. मगर भूख बहोत लगी है”. Sandhya is not even able to pretend to be grief-stricken.

Every character has a well earned place in the film. Sandhya comes to meet her departed husband’s colleague Aakanksha (Sayani Gupta) and an unlikely bond develops between two young women who would have been sworn enemies in most traditional movies. Sandhya’s in-laws and departed Astik’s grief stricken parents (Sheeba Chadha & Ashotosh Rana) find themselves at the mercy of their extended family’s manipulation, in their moment of heartbreak.

Sanya Malhotra’s acting is subtle, yet sharp and the movie is complex, yet focused. The story that begins with the tragic death of a man, leaving his confused wife a young widow, ends with her finding life and reasons to live.  I rate the movie a high 4.9 on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being excellent.

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Sir – Movie Review


Writer/ Director Rohena Gera’s Hindi, English and Marathi language movie “Sir” was released at Cannes Film Festival and at New York Indian Film Festival in 2019 and is released in theaters in November, 2020. 

Sir movie review: A courageous traverse into difficult territory |  Entertainment News,The Indian Express

Movie centers around Ratna (Tilotama Shome) who got married and widowed at a very young age and her circumstances boxed her inside a life void of dreams. However, in the hope of saving money in feeding an idle mouth, her family from the village allowed her to work as a maid in Mumbai. This allowed Ratna to both nurse her dreams as well as save money to help her younger sister complete her education. Ratna herself hopes to be a fashion designer. 

Ratna works as a domestic worker in the home of Ashwin (Vivek Gomber) who has recently returned from the USA, after the untimely death of his younger brother. Ashwin’s guests rarely see beyond Ratna’s status, though Ashwin is a kind man. Ratna may not be highly educated and may not be very articulate in her speech. But Ratna has pride, resilience and persistence that can generate respect in anyone, if only they see beyond her status and class. 

Here is a brief dialog between Ashwin and his friend that is rather ordinary from one angle and also extraordinary from a different viewpoint.

Friend: she is your maid
Ashwin: Put that aside for a minute
Friend: How? How can you put that aside?

I won’t say more about the film although there also isn’t much in the plot or the storyline to give away.  The beauty of the film lies in the masterful use of silence and understated dialogues between people divided by uncrossable red lines, considered sacred by the society. Equally understated ending is at the same time beautiful and brilliant. While to some extent, it may be up to luck and only time may tell what fruits are borne by romance and love, enabling someone to do better, to help them fulfill their dreams, to assist them in upgrading their status, is an undisputed act of love.

Sir movie is streaming on @Netflix and on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being excellent, I rate the movie 4.4.

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Thappad Movie Review


Thappad begins with the routine family life of Amrita (Taapsee Pannu) a happily married housewife and her husband, Vikran (Pavail Gulati).  Vikram works in a reputed company and is aggressively focused on climbing the corporate ladder that will ultimately take him to London, as the head honcho. Amrita is aware of how much his career means to Vikram, and is fully focused on supporting her husband. Her life revolves around looking for his comfort and attending to his mother, Sulochana (Tanvi Azmi)

 

Vikarm is elated when he is selected for the desired role and throws a celebration party to his friends. During the celebration, he gets the news that another white man is deemed more appropriate and Vikram would be reporting to him. Vikram has a heated argument with one of his superiors Rajhans, who was attending the party. When Amrita comes in the middle and tries to stop him for escalating the argument, Vikram’s anger turns on her and he slaps her. This thappad begins a chain of events and forms the core theme of the movie.

Image result for thappad

This movie is a MeToo moment for me and is personal for me in several ways, although for me, it wasn’t the first thappad and lack of apology. But after I let go of the first thappad after tearful apologies, the apologies became less frequent and genuine and then disappeared, and thappads became more routine. In a changing India, Amrita refuses to brush off this single incident of violence and public humiliation. When she questions her life choices and finally her marriage, Vikran propelled by anger and bad advice, transforms a no contest, mutual consent divorce into a full blown court battle. That was another MeToo moment for me and a reminder of the time when my appeal for mediation was thrown out and the accusations and fake accusations were launched, casting me as an abuser and mentally unstable.  It is easy to be charming in public and in periods of happiness, but as a society and in family units, we need to ask a question, how do people react under stress and outside of the public eye, and do women get to bear the brunt of family stress and do they lose their right to be happy, one smile at a time?

 

The movie does not make light of a thappad, nor does it make a thappad bigger than what it is. Instead, what the film does is to serve as a thoughtful reminder that abuse should not be an acceptable aspect in a relationship and love, respect and happiness are closely tied together. Amrita says, मुझे वहां रहना नथी जहाँ पे मेरी वेल्यू न हो and she says, “I want to be happy and when I say, I am happy, I don’t want to look unreal”.  Even while making a compelling case for a woman’s right to genuine happiness, the movie does not downgrade into men bashing thoughtlessness. And even when the movie focuses on happiness which would be at a higher level in Maslows’s hierarchy of needs, the film does not fail to show the struggles of women like Amrita’s maid, who are battling domestic violence at home on a daily basis, while working in low level jobs.

 

What is working so beautifully in the movie is that the dialogs are natural and low key.  Huge kudos to Director Anubhav Sinha and co script writers Sinha and Mrunmayee Lagoo to not just stir up passions but make this a strongly worded film of significanceTapsee Pannu is fabulous in conveying the impact of her experience and her dilemma without getting acrimonious, loud or overbearing. Her restrained acting with impactful dialogs serves as moments of reckoning about the assumptions and expectations surrounding women’s roles in Indian society. The entire cast including Kumud Sharma (Amrita’s adoring father), Pavil Gulati (Vikram), Ratna Pathak Shah (Amrita’s mother), Tanvi Azmi (Amrita’s mother in law), Maya Sarao (Amrita’s lawyer) and Geetika Vidya Ohlyan (Amrita’s maid) show the restraint and deliver a powerful film. On a scale of 1 to 5 (with 5 being perfect), I rate the film as 4.9.

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