Pataakha Movie Review Rating: 2.5/5 Stars (Two and half stars)
Star Cast: Sanya Malhotra, Radhika Madan, Sunil Groverr, Vijay Raaz, Namit Das, Abishek Duhan
Director: Vishal Bhardwaj
What’s Good: The trio of Radhika Madan, Sanya Malhotra & Sunil Grover live their parts with utmost honesty, dialogues are good at places and they go well with the dialect
What’s Bad: It’s adapted from a short story known as ‘Do Behnein’ and once you see the film you’ll realise why it was good till the short story, screenplay is stretched & repetitive, lack of emotional connect
Loo Break: Yes, second half is full of many unconvincing moments and each of the scream out ‘LOO BREAK’
Watch or Not?: If you’ve been a regular student to the Vishal Bhardwaj’s school of cinema OR you’re someone who cherishes performance and little technicalities of film-making, you can give it a try
Pataakha, a story about two sisters, was touted to break the stereotypes of the lovey-dovey image of siblings in Bollywood. Genda Kumari aka Chutki (Sanya Malhotra) and Champa Kumari aka Badki (Radhika Madan) aren’t a pair of siblings you see in your daily life. Along with mouthing abuses, they even physically assault each other over a ‘beedi’. Their father Shanti Bhushan aka Bapu (Vijay Raaz) is obliged to pay a huge amount to money to some guy from forest department in order to continue running his business.
Dipper Naradmuni (Sunil Grover), the instigator, tries to create a mess of every situation not with a bad heart but he gets a kick out of it. Patel (Saananad Verma) is the not-so-eligible bachelor of the area but he’s rich. He offers Bapu to pay out the entire amount of his loan on the condition of getting married to any one of his girls. This creates a chaos among the sisters as they both love someone else. The story takes a twist when both of their lovers turn out to be brothers.
Pataakha Movie Review: Script Analysis
Charan Singh Pathik, for a reason wrote this story as a short one because he knew there’s not much scope for a feature film. Vishal Bhardwaj took it exploring the metaphorical angle of Indo-Pak, adding a flimsy psychosomatic twist to the siblings. It’s good till a point of time but after sometime, you’ll wish the story should’ve had more. The entire first half is shown in the multiple trailers which were released and hinted at the desperation of gaining buzz.
Majority of time, the screenplay is divided into two similar parts – what happens to a sister will also happen to another one, and that gives a hard time in the second half. It’s the latter half in which things start to slip and even the good performances fail to save the day. What works at places is the dialogues of the film; very cleverly written, they’re backed by an intriguing dialect.
Pataakha Movie Review: Star Performance
Radhika Madan is mind-blowingly amazing! She brings in her enough of acting experience and does a ‘dhamaaka’ on screen. She scores brownie points for her weirdly satisfying expressions. Sanya Malhotra, straight out of Dangal, gets into another one. Here she proves why she was always an apt choice for Dangal. From getting the dialect on point to delivering the quirky dialogues, she does everything right.
Sunil Grover was roped in to bring a comical relief to the film and we all know there’s no one better than him for this job. The way he plays with his expressions, his lip movements – just his face is enough. An actor is not someone who acts just through his expressions and Grover proves through his physical humour why he’s a brilliant one. Vijay Raaz, sadly, doesn’t get much scope but he’s good for whatever time he’s there on screen. Saananad Verma is decent, Namit Das and Abishek Duhan (lovers of the siblings) are just about okay.
Pataakha Movie Review: Direction, Music
Post the disaster of Rangoon, I thought I’ll not be able to sit through another Vishal Bhardwaj movie in a theatre but your job makes you do things against your will. Pataakha isn’t a bad film, it’s just a stretched one. The only novelty factor that really works is the Indo-Pak references and that too is very limited. Bhardwaj, in order to bring in the authenticity, plays along with the dialogues & the agrarian DOP which doesn’t pay off very well.
Music plays a very important role in any Bhardwaj film but with Pataakha it seems he took this department way too lightly this time. The title song creates and impact but that’s it. Malaika Arora’s name though was mentioned in the credit list but her song was missing which was missed.
Pataakha Movie Review: The Last Word
All said and done, Pataakha is not the kind of explosion you wish from an entertaining film. The leads does their job well but they are not led towards anything substantial. Full points for performances but it requires grace marks when it comes to the story.
Two and a half stars!
Pataakha releases on 28th September, 2018.
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