About "Sairat"


I watch quite a few movies in languages i don't understand, because why miss a gem just because of a language barrier. There have been marvelous movies that i was fortunate enough to come across in various languages (of course with subtitles): Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Bengali, Korean and Marathi. Recently I watched this Marathi movie called "Sairat" (Meaning Wild / Free spirit).

I will not speak about the movie plot and technicalities in detail as neither this is a review nor do i want to deter you from enjoying a wonderful movie. I'd like to, however, point out the things that i absolutely LOVED about the movie. Sairat is an epic love story between a high caste girl and a low caste boy, ironically made epic by the unfortunate caste system. The first half is funny, fresh and goes by in a breeze specially laced with some beautiful, beautiful music. Reality strikes in second half and the story takes a somewhat serious turn (Welcome to reality, I'm a bitch!).

What i loved about the movie?


The love story. Charming, authentic and at the same time - very engaging. 

The writing and direction. How an unoriginal story has been told in such an original way, how the movie is so real yet never bores you, how the characters are ingeniously developed and transformed with the story.

The acting. Lead characters "Archie" and "Prashya" portrayed by two new-comers show such a finesse that's unseen even in greatest of actors. Rinku Rajguru (the actress) won a, well deserved, National Award for this role. Hero's two friends "Pradeep" and "Salya" are adorable and charming and produce many hilarious moments in the first half.

The music. Background score, sound engineering and songs are sublime - i don't understand a word yet i love the songs. Great work by Ajay-Atul (Remember the song Abhi Mujh Mein Kahin?).

The subtleties. The film is extremely earthy and grounded (Similar to another favorite movie of yours truly: Masaan). Then there is the bold heroin of the story ("Archie") who is shown riding a horse, a Royal Enfield Bullet and even a tractor. There's a superb scene where the newly in-lou heroin keeps staring at the hero (one of the many great romantic scenes in the first half) sitting in a class room until the guy is embarrassed - now how many times have you seen that? The same character, transforms greatly in the second half, all kudos to the director and of course the actor Rinku Rajguru.

The message. The movie talks about an inter-caste love story and how deeply the caste-system is rooted in our society. No wonder it's a common story told many a times in many different cultural setups. In one of the interviews, the director mentions, that inspired by the film there are now societies coming up honoring inter-caste marriages and many parents are calling their children back. Cinema can have such a profound impact, i hope it spreads even further.

The last scene. Direction at its best!

I cannot recommend this movie enough. Please go and watch SAIRAT. You can watch it later in your language as well, since the movie will be remade in almost all Indian languages, but would you eat a teekha maharashtrian vada paav with sambhar?

Watch the trailer on YouTube (Subtitles available).

And here are full songs on YouTube.



अभी कल ही की बात है

मोती
जब नन्ही आँखें भरा करतीं 
तो नायाब मोती झड़ा करते 
ज़िद किसी खिलौने की या 
फरमाइश किसी चॉकलेट की 
थोड़ा और टीवी देखने का अरमान
या सोते हुए
एक और कहानी सुनने का फरमान 
सोना आसान था 
रोना आसान था 
अभी कल ही की बात है.  


चूरन
जब एक बूढ़े बाबा बरगद के नीचे 
चूरन की दुकान सजाते
गाँव जब गर्मी की दोपहरी में सोता 
सब बच्चे चुपके से चवन्नियां ले, 
दबे पाँव - उड़कर - उनके पास आते
लेता इमली का चूरन कोई
कोई आम का पापड़ लेता
लेता बेर का बोरकुट कोई 
कोई अनारदाने की गोली लेता
चवन्नी के चूरन में 
करोड़ों के स्वाद पा जाते 
अभी कल ही की बात है.  


क्रिकेट
जब सचिन की सेंचुरी पर 
मैच खत्म होने से पहले ही जश्न मनाते 
और कभी गर वो जल्दी आउट हो गया 
तो टीवी बंद कर खुद बाहर खेलने चले जाते
बनते सचिन, द्रविड़, सहवाग या गांगुली 
बनाते कई हज़ार से रन एक ही मैच में 
और अगर आउट भी हो गए तो?
"मेरा बैट, मेरी डबल बैटिंग!"
गली क्रिकेट का रंग ही अपना था 
(और आखिर बैट जो अपना था)
अभी कल ही की बात है.  


त्यौहार
जब दिवाली पर अब्बा पटाखे लाते 
हम गलियों में रॉकेट-रेस लगाते 
ईद पर सारे दोस्त घर आते
अम्मी की सेवई कटोरियाँ भर-भर खाते 
पर बेस्ट तो थे सैंटा-क्लॉज़ दादू
हर क्रिसमस पर पता नहीं कैसे,
परफेक्ट गिफ्ट का करते थे जादू
मज़ेदार थे सब त्यौहार 
मज़हब की नहीं थी समझ जब 
सुकून था ज़िन्दगी में तब 
अभी कल ही की बात है. 


जवाब
जब एक छोटी सी चिट को 
- "I love you" लिख कर - 
छुपाया था माइक्रो-इकोनॉमिक्स की मोटी किताब में
और फिर कांपते हाथों से दिया था उसे 
- "पढ़ कर देखिएगा, अच्छी किताब है" - 
फिर
कितने दिन इंतज़ार किया
कितनी सदियाँ इंतज़ार किया 
अगली बार जब वो दिखी
तो मुझे देख अपनी सहेली से बात करने लगी 
उस लम्हे में अगर क़ायनात भी आ जाती 
तो मुझे उसके सिवा कुछ और सुनाई ना देता 
मीठी - जानबूझ कर थोड़ी ऊंची - आवाज़ में
कनखियों से मुझे देखते हुए उसने  कहा 
"आजकल मुझे माइक्रो-इकोनॉमिक्स बहुत पसंद आने लगा है!"
इश्क़ के इज़हार बड़े दिलचस्प हुआ करते थे 
अभी कल ही की बात है. 

What makes a great TV drama?

Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, The Breaking Bad, Entourage, The Sopranos, Sherlock, The Wire, Narcos, Dexter, Mad Men - and many more such shows, these are some of the best of TV dramas (until now). One wonders then, what is it, that makes a great TV drama show?

Is it the story? Is it the story-telling? Is it the characters? Is it the acting? Is it the production quality? Is it the fan theories? Is it their amalgamation into pop culture? Is it marketing? Is it the need to have a conversation topic for your social gatherings? Is it because gone are the days when you'd go out and create real life dramas compared to watching the drama unfold in your temperature controlled apartment from the comforts of the-mighty-couch-throne? Is it something else or is it everything combined? 

Who cares, just go (read: don't go anywhere) and frickin' enjoy the shows. Long live binge watching!