The last time I saw a movie in an Indian theatre (if my memory is not failing me) was ‘Dil To Pagal Hai’ sometime in 1997-1998. After leaving India, even though I regularly watch all movies, and come to India, I had never watched one in an Indian theatre. So Karwaan is a personal special.
Leaving the personal side aside… Karwaan is a simple story that is brilliantly executed. The movie is also introducing Malayalam actor Dulquer Salman (Mammootty’s Son) to Bollywood. We had earlier seen Prithviraj (another Malayalam actor) enter Bollywood. If Prithvi’s roles were a mix of negative and action oriented roles, Dulquer comes as the boy next door. His ease of acting and the way he gels into the frame is amazing.
Irrfan as always gives the movie a 5/5 even before he starts acting. I wish him speedy recovery as we cannot afford to have such amazing talent off-screen for long. Irrfan is among those stars whose silence, looks and just an ‘ada’ alone fuel a film.
The film is a drama that mixes emotion and comic situations in the backdrop of a simple life fact. ‘That life, so fast, quick and like a snap of finger is gone’. And in this quick small time one needs to follow their dreams, be considerate and not take shit. You don’t have time for shit… you have just enough time to figuring yourself out.
And for Dulquer, since he is Mammootty’s son, it is interesting to watch him… because the thing I felt about Mammootty is that he always towers the screen and often offers very less for the co-stars to command and deliver on. May be that is a superstar problem. And it is nice to see Dulquer adding up potential even to the effort of others. I am sure it could also be due to co-stars like Irrfan who breathe (into the film) acting over stardom.
Malayalam film field has become an old man’s game like some anti aging solution for two or three old people wanting to feel young. It is not their fault because fans want to keep watching them. There are changes in the way films are made in Malayalam but I still wonder how a movie like Karwaan will happen in Malayalam.
If they make Karwaan in Malayalam and put one of Malayalam superstars in Irrfan’s role, I have my doubts on how effective it will be. The chemistry and acting potential might not be what Irrfan through his presence would offer to Dulquer. That might be the reason why we do not see many successful movies where a Malayalam superstar acts alongside a younger star in an equally important balanced role.
And I am not talking about action flicks of youngsters where the superstar makes a larger than life entry just to show off stardom and not add any value to the story or film. We have many of that in Malayalam where a Superstar is paid and asked to show his presence for marketing rather than because the script demands it. I am talking of a role like the one Irrfan does that gives value to a new comer.
Super stardom always hampers creativity even for great actors, except for (I think) actors like Irrfan and a few others in the Indian cinema. There is a lot the Malayalam superstars have to learn and grow into to be amazing. The rule is we should have quality over quantity 🙂
When I posted this review, one of my friends shared another review on the wire titled
Karwaan Is Low on Merit, High on Insensitivity which says the movie was very misogynistic. I could not agree on that and I had put a comment in there. Here it is just for some context.
I agree with many things that the reviewer says.. but it is only half truth and not the entire movie. But if we bend on seeing what is wrong with a film.. yes then the review is complete….
- The movie also has scene where Mithila Palkar talks straight to Dulquer asking him to not judge her with her lifestyle and clothes and we see that Dulquer does some soul searching and figures how he is not right and they mend ways.
- Also Shaukhat above all the small comic stuff makes some profound statements of why women should not suffer and take shit from others… His drunkard father and his suffering mom are the example he quotes… Again he points that fact that his mom (like many women in our world) don’t take that first step to liberate from the clutches of a male dominated society..
- And the same old Shehnaai guy the critic talks about as being joked upon is also found to be a wife beating guy who has married three and his last wife is less than his daughter’s age… 🙂
That is why I say… if we want to see the negative.. we can find just that… and write something that just forgets and ignore many aspects and come up with a half truth 🙂 I say that because now when I read some of my such old reviews.. I can connect with the reviewer.. it is always difficult to find anything good and way easy to find what is wrong… I am not saying the reviewer is wrong.. just that the review is not complete… but I respect his opinion….
Also the subtlety in which they show Avinash meeting his college friend and how the whole few scenes play out with them and the college friend’s husband.. all show the richness and openness of modern relationships where people look at the good things of life and think and accept the life they have…