Friday, January 18, 2013

First film of 2013 is as confusing as the title

First film of 2013 was as confusing as the title

The first major hindi film to be released this year was Vishal Bhardwaj's Matru ki Bijli ka Mandola.  This much awaited film from versatile film maker Vishal Bhardwaj, who has given us films like Omkara, Makdee, Blue Umbrella, Maqbool, Kaminey and a totally forgettable Saat Khoon Maaf, had generated hyper curiosity among the film buffs and critics alike owing to its mysterious title.
I expected a different kind of film at the start of year from Vishal Bhardwaj,  however I was disappointed because I just couldn't make out what Vishal had to convey through the film.  The director has tried his best to make the film a visual treat but due to subtle variations in the plot it fails to make a impact on the common purpose of the film i.e. the farmers.  

The first frame of the film was beautiful as is expected from the filmmaker.  The opening scene of the panoramic view of green fields and a limo parked in middle of nowhere gives a very good first impression of the film.  The locales have been shot very beautifully and add certain surreal look to the film.  The Cinematography is excellent with camera being led into the scenes beautifully.

Vishal has treated the film like a baby, a pampered baby at that.  The satire and drama have been used to good effect.  One scene in which Mandola flies the plane when he is drunk, but doesn't know how to land the plane is the outstanding shot of the film as far as I am concerned.  It brings out the character of an typical Indian who wants to rise to high places but doesn't know how to go about it.   however somethings have not been understood/underplayed in the film like the relationship between the Deviji(played by Shabana Azmi) and Mandola and the chemistry between them.  Another aspect of the film which is hard to digest is how come a Oxford educated girl like Bijli falls for the Baadal who is shown as crooked throughout the film.

Performances by all the actors except Anushka as Bijli are outstanding.    The film belongs to Harry Mandola (Played by Pankaj Kapoor) who is just fantastic.  

On the whole a left leaning satire which seems more of a theatre than a film, that to 70 mm one.  It is a gift for theatre lovers who will get both a film and a drama at a price of one.  Vishal's left leanings are quite visible through out the film but he fails to show what his intentions are.  The interpretation of Gulabo is very difficult to understand and contradictory to the story of the film.  Actually the film should have been named as Mandola ki Bijli ka Matru, which I think would have been less confusing.  Matru's Character though well established lacks any formal end as required.  In the end Vishal tries to commercialise the subject.

Music wise the background score is good and one song is quite hummable "Oye Boy Charlie" other the rest are worth forgetting.

This film is for leftist intellectuals and theatre addicts.  When I left the cinema hall whether Vishal wanted to say was drinking alcohol make a man more sensible.  

Kul milake Gayi Bhains Paani Mein

Post your comments suggestions about the film on this blog.

As discussed in the Film Bar

Bartenders advise : Don't see you bhains (buffalo) in the night, it may seem Gulabo, and in the morning it will be black again.

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