Kranti Kanade’s “Chaitra” (2002), a short film based on veteran writer G. A. Kulkarni’s story was a part of my 10th class Marathi subject instead of reading the story I watched the short film and that was time when the “film as a powerful medium” striked upon. His work did fascinate and I was an admirer already when at the National Film Archive of India’s Film Appreciation we were shown “Mahek” (2005).
(Not bragging but a reality check) Apart from being a Film Critic, I’m also a Film and Psychology Student. It is difficult to balance between them but I somehow manage. Abstract film or the films which you don’t understand easily always tend to have an impression of an excellent or path-breaking film. Kanade’s CRD comes as a savoring which is an intoxicating story-telling in its simplistic manner. The power of film and theater comprises much of the film-making (also breaking the rules).
Chetan (Saurabh Saraswat) is a new student who is misfit in the Fergusson College’s already theatre group aiming to win the prestigious Purushottam Karandak in Pune and he makes his own group. The story will come across as a usual one but this isn’t your usual cup to win in the theater- it’s an intellectual stimulation. The way Kranti Kanade has weaved the story in their multiple narratives and format is intriguing because it gives a sense of many perspectives or rather realities. Though based upon the French style of story-telling, here animation sequences and narrations make way into the mis-en-scenes.
With the pleasures of cinematic experience, the film does come shockingly. The most aesthetic sexual counter executed brilliantly which comes before the inevitable interval is breathtaking. I don’t know what the writers Kranti Kanade and Dharmakirti Sumant were thinking or were high on but they crawled into the character’s inner-self and immersed that self into mine. In a particular sequence, Chetan is meeting the winners and writers to know the formula of winning a play. Eventually, the sequence reaches masturbation where a prominent director exclaims the writing process as “coming out”. Looks like the adjectives due to excelling narrative have dried since I had an absolute intellectual stimulation while witnessing this film.
I won’t discuss the technicality because it’s at a different level altogether. Saurabh Saraswat who plays the lead is one of the finest actor accompanied strongly by Vinay Sharma is frightening. Mrinmayee Godbole, Isha Keskar, Geetika Tyachi and Abhay Mahajan form the strongest support. A terrific ensemble of actors and technical aspects alike.
Theater mixes with Cinema resulting an absolute cinematic experience. Overwhelming experience! Seriously, “a never seen before Indian film”.
Release: 29 September, 2017
Director: Kranti Kanade
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