June 7, 2011 (Calcutta Tube): Aat Paake Bandha is a 2011 Bengali film directed by Kunal Choudhury and Ruby Gupta with Abhishek Chatterjee, Biplab Chatterjee, Arpita Baker, Vishal and others in the cast. Read the Bengali movie review at Calcutta Tube.
AAT PAAKE BANDHA- GOD SAVE THIS FILM AND THE AUDIENCE
Produced by: Ruby Gupta
Direction: Kunal Choudhury and Ruby Gupta
Music: Bappi Lahiri
Story, script and dialogue: Ruby Gupta
Editor: Dipak Mandal
Camera: Soumitra Haldar and Debashish
Choreography: Kailash and Sonu Sahani
Cast: Abhishek Chatterjee, Biplab Chatterjee, Arpita Baker, Ruhi,Chaitali Dasgupta, Dipannita and introducing Vishaal
Date of release: May 20 2011
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[ReviewAZON asin=”B003M5P9GK” display=”inlinepost”]Aat Paake Bandha’s story begins well with Indra (Vishal) struggling for his life in a nursing home suffering from terminal cancer. His estranged wife Priya (Dipannita) who has divorced him through a misunderstanding is unwilling to go to his bedside. His close friend pleads with her to go to his bedside. The little son appeals to her. Does she go? Let us see.
A flashback unfolds the love story of Indro and Priya who met in college and fell so hopelessly in love that with the blessings of parents on either side, got married soon after their Indro came back from higher studies abroad in what looks either like a monoplane or a helicopter – I am not sure which or why or how. The marriage, though conducted in the Hindu manner by a priest, shows that neither the bride nor the groom wear garlands. In fact, there is not a single flower in the entire marriage mandap!
A stranger honeymoon follows with the couple parking a white car somewhere in the middle of nowhere and begins a song-dance number to show the time-leap to a little boy Priya gives birth to till the boy is around five. Indro has killing headaches. He is diagnosed as suffering from Hodgkin’s disease, a cancer in its formative stages. The doctor warns him against cigarettes and alcohol. Priya takes loving care of him till he gets back to work.
Brishti (Ruhi) who was in love with Indro in college returns. He invites her to a stag party (!). Brishti, intent on breaking the marriage, doctors his drink. He develops a headache and she drives him back to her flat for an anxious Priya to discover them in bed together. Priya walks out but is not allowed to take the boy along. A devastated Indro takes to the bottle like one possessed. The film comes back into the present. A repentant Brishti asks to be forgiven by Priya. Indro rises from terminal cancer by the magic touch of love from and for Priya.
The script dips into a couple of scenes from the Madhuri Dixit-Amir Khan hit Dil (1990). On the morning after that traumatic night Priya is kidnapped by Indro’s friends and threatened by Indro with rape, she is shown smiling at herself, as if nothing has happened, discovering her love for the young man who she tried to defame with a rape threat and who threatened her with rape in reply.
Vishaal fails to impress with his expression-less performance. His muscular body is misplaced in a romantic character like Indro. Dipannita acts well with her eyes but her body language is stiff and self-conscious. Biplab Chatterjee is sweet and syrupy as Indro’s father. Arpita Baker has nothing much to do. Chaitali Dasgupta is reduced to a junior artiste as Priya’s mother. Abhishek is controlled in a role that does no justice to his talents. Ruhi is too obvious as the scarcely seen screen vamp. Bappie Lahiri’s music is no great shakes and the Tagore song is placed in a very wrong ambience. He has probably sung the song himself, a wrong decision. The background score is terrible and often goes off track. The editing and the cinematography of the film have to be seen to be believed. Every frame cuts off the tops of the heads of the actors in the close-ups of which there are one too many. The minute the scene shifts from indoors to outdoors, except in the song-dance scenes between Priya and Indro, the light is so bad and so dark that it is difficult to recognise the characters.
“Indro’s love was larger than life” goes the bottom line in the publicity brochure. Sadly, the film is much smaller than anyone’s life.
– Shoma A. Chatterji