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Monday, June 30, 2008

Movie Review : Via Darjeeling

 Via Darjeeling (Thriller)

Cast: Kay Kay Menon, Sonali Kulkarni, Pravin Dabas, Vinay Pathak, Rajat Kapoor, Sandhya Mridul

Direction: Arindam Nandy 

HERE'S your chance to give a perfect ending to a honeymooning couple, Ankur Sharma (Kay Kay) and Rimli Sharma (Sonali Kulkarni), on their way back home via Darjeeling. All you need to do is solve the mystery of the missing husband. And no prizes, only clues, for guessing that. For starters, there is the lead given by Robin Dutt (Vinay Pathak) who plays the kewl cop on the mysterious case. Taking off from there is yet another fine performance by Ronodeep Sen (Rajat Kapoor) with his editorial hunger for ‘unpublished scandals'. Next in line is Mallika Tiwari (Sandhya Mridul) who never trusts a man who smokes an unlit cigarette. That's another story, we realise as the movie progresses, that she trusts no man. Followed by decent performances by hostess Preeti Sen (Simone Singh) and filmmaker Kaushik Chatterjee (Proshanth Narayanan) with his who-needs-a-tried-and-tested formula to make movies work. As for the prime characters, Sonali does a smart tightrope between the sometime-steady-sometime-two timing wife, while it is Kay Kay, who as he moves from one part of the movie to the next, reaches a new level of excellence. As for why Darjeeling, keep guessing? Sadly, the film barely captures any scenic beauty of the place.

So do you really get to know whatever happened to Ankur? Well choose your pick from the versions given by sub-characters -- maybe Ankur was a con man, maybe Ankur was killed, maybe he committed suicide or maybe he was planning to kill his wife... Whatever it is, we really don’t know. Not even after the movie ends! So, is this an Indian Rashomon? Did we hear Kurosawa groan? Here's an experimental film that needed some more time in the petri dish.

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