On Friday my husband surprised me, he asked me out for a movie of course it was a Marathi movie and it was more to take a relative out. But of course we did go. And the Movie was “Sandook”
It was first day first show….
Movie set in the British era, it opened like the Malgudi days with R.K. Narayan’s sardonic sense of humour about a statue of a British citizen in the centre of a none descript town of Sambalgad. Subtitles of course helped a person like me, who is not comfortable in Marathi, but all the same it does distract.
Like I said the movie is set in the British India, with Waman Rao Ashtaputre ( Sumeet Raghavan) who dreams about living up to the Ashtaputre lineage who are immortalized as photographs on the wall, interesting that the lineage had photographs of people before tradition of photographs arrived. He gets his much awaited chance accidentally, through a friend Banya who is a revolutionary who hands him a sandook… which is the mystery and the key throughout the movie.
Sumeet Raghavan is quite good, in this satirical thriller, that fails to get you bite your nails. Though personally I found the Rahul Mahendale as Bhatkande well essayed, the meek government employ who is a secret revolutionary was brought out well by Mehendale both through body language and voice. Sharad Ponkshe as Shyam Rao and Brandon Hill as Scott was quite impressive. The rest of the cast do not undermine the final product but they are do not contribute enough to make the movie as powerful as it could be. Oh yes the twist was really a surprise. Firdaus Mewawala as Billimoria was boringly stereotype, who forgot his Parsi accent in between.
The finale where WamanRao Ashtaputre gets to vindicate himself somehow was not very convincing with the way his character was brought out. One particular scene that struck me was WamanRao’s son Bharat, who is all the while reluctant to memorise his ancestors and their achievement does so spontaneously as if to all forth their strength at a moment when he needs to be brave.
To me the way the narrative has woven historic facts into it was interesting. This could actually be a great way to learn history in its totality. The use of folk dances was again remarkably authentic thanks to whoever the dance choreographer was may his or her tribe grow.
A good one time watch, for a person who reads the subtitle a true blood Maharashtrian viewer would probably say something different.