Uro Chithi (2011)-Bengali Movie Review

Tanushree Chakraborty, Indranil Sengupta in Bengali film 'Uro Chithi'Aug 20, 2011 (Calcutta Tube / IBNS): Uro Chithi is a 2011 Bengali film directed by Kamaleswar Mukherjee with Indranil Sengupta, Srilekha Mitra, Biswajit Chakraborty,Rajatabha Dutta, Tanushree Chakraborty, Rudranil Ghosh and others in the cast. Read the Bengali movie review at Calcutta Tube.

URO CHITHI – UNUSUAL BUT CONFUSING

Banner: Phoenix Cinemas

Produced by: Manu Malhotra and Ajay Bakliwal

Story, script and direction: Kamaleswar Mukherjee

D.O.P.: Manoj Mishra

Music: Debajyoti Mishra

Sound Design: Anirban Sengupta and Dipankar Chaki

Art direction: Dhananjay Mondal

Lyrics: Srijato, Anindyo, Sukanya, Kamaleswar

Cast: Indranil Sengupta, Srilekha Mitra, Biswajit Chakraborty,Rajatabha Dutta, Tanushree Chakraborty, Rudranil Ghosh, Sudipta Chakraborty, Biswanath Bose, Locket Chatterjee,Saswato Chatterjee, Reshmi Ghosh and Anjan Dutt

Date of release: August 12, 2011

Rating: 06/10

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[ReviewAZON asin=”B0057XXJKI” display=”inlinepost”]Aniket (Indranil Sengupta) is a high-flying tech who wakes up from drunken slumber in some seaside resort. He finds his cell phone inbox choc-a-bloc and he begins to delete them. With each message he deletes, he flashes back into his relationships – personal, social and professional. It is a very original, post-modern and up-market idea. But in reality, it is a single story of Aniket and his brush with the recession that has given his career a bad beating, his adulterous and clandestine affair with Lilette (Tanushree Chakraborty) that breaks his till-then, seven-year marriage to Raka (Srilekha Mitra), and his tragic estrangement from Lilette who goes away to Singapore when she discovers she is HIV+.

It is courageous for a new director to take up a multi-track storyline with a new structure. Kamaleswar Mukherjee has done pretty well, up to a certain point – till the seventh wedding anniversary party of Aniket and Raka. It establishes the timeline of the film that ends with their oncoming eighth anniversary – is a reunion in the offing? The narrative is flush with sub-plots and characters that zero in on Aniket. Some of the characters are well-rounded while most are kept at rather sketchy levels that do not contribute to the film. One example is Rohit (Rajatava Dutta), a born gambler ready to stake everything even when the chips are down. The other is Farhad (Anjan Dutt), Aniket’s physics lecturer. The film would have done well even without these add-ons.

The most realistic sub-plot that does not belong to the elitist world the film prides in is the Suhas-Sudha story. Suhas (Biswanath Bose) is a frustrated worker who has lost his job since his factory had declared a lock-out and cannot do anything else. His wife Sudha (Locket Chatterjee) pushed to the edge opens a beauty parlour which turns out to be a massage parlour and she is placed behind bars. The other good touch is loud-mouthed ‘event manager’ Kevin (Rudranil Ghosh)’s slowly failing live-in relationship with high-end fashion designer Sonia (Sudipta Chakraborty) She aborts their baby when the USG reveals that the child will remain trapped to a wheel chair for life. Aniket’s father Mohit (Biswajit Chakraborty) adds to the seemingly goody-goody character Aniket is given, deeply undercut by Aniket’s sudden fascination of Lillette making him completely insular to what wreck it can reduce his family to. Also neutralized is his humanist zeal in rescuing Suhas and Sudha’s son by depositing him with Farhad because he spends little time over his own responsibilities as husband and father. The ambiguous relationship between Aniket and his boss Shalini (Reshmi Ghosh) remains unexplained.

The economic recession the country was reeling under influencing and impacting on everyone’s life is a strong undercurrent just below the surface. This comes up subtly between and among the characters and their stories, making recession squarely responsible for ruining the lives of most of the characters. This is the most original touch in the narrative handled very well by Kamaleswar Mukherjee. Debajyoti Mishra’s music and some of the songs are very good but the film could have done with fewer songs.

A problem with multi-track storylines is that the actors are not given much scope. Given this grave limitation, Uro Chithi throws up excellent performances from Srilekha Mitra, Rajatava Dutta, Biswanath Bose, Tanushree Chakraborty, Locket Chatterjee, Rudranil Ghosh and Sudipta Chakraborty. Indranil as Aniket is sadly trapped in a character that is neither here not there, vacillating constantly, puzzled, failing to take a stand to back his wronged colleagues, betraying his friendship with Shalini at one go. But he is only human, says the director. In this sense, Indranil has done well indeed. Manoj Mishra’s cinematography keeps pace with the different segments of the story. But at the end of it all, Uro Chithi has too many characters that have spoiled the story and the spirit of the film. Youngsters about to be married will find the film scary. Those who are already married, will be plagued with doubts.

– Shoma A. Chatterji

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