Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Viruddh… Family Comes First

Some movies are so appealing that they manage to pluck the right string in your heart every single time you watch them. Viruddh is one such emotionally touching film about a small close-knit family in Mumbai.

The first half of the movie revolves around the life of an elderly couple in their early sixties; Vidyadhar and Sumitra Patwardhan (Amitabh Bachchan & Sharmila Tagore). Their only son Amar (John Abraham), who is also the narrator of the movie, studies abroad in London and is in love with a girl named Jenny (Anusha Dandekar). Amar returns to India and marries Jenny with the blessings of his parents. The subtle humor that the family shares and the way they derive happiness from the smaller joys of life, is lovely to watch.

In the second half, the life of the Patwardhan household turns topsy-turvy when Amar witnesses a crime and gets killed during unimaginable turn of events.

While the family is coping with this tremendous loss, the media, the society and the dysfunctional system further worsen their life through mental harassment. Amar’s murderer Harshvardhan (Amitabh Dayal) happens to be a leading politician’s son. Political influences are used to set him free and Amar is proved to be a drug peddler. The Patwardhan family collapses and struggles to fight back in the corrupt system. At this juncture, all they want is justice and all they aim is to prove Amar’s innocence.

The creator of ‘Vaastav’, Mahesh Manjrekar though not at his cinematic best in Viruddh, crafts out a decent film and once again demonstrates his mettle in making reality cinema. He sticks to the genre he is best at and delivers just what is needed; with no larger than life characters and no over dramatization.

A well directed film, Viruddh is bundled with an effective background score by Ajay-Atul, a well known music-director duo in Marathi cinema. Amitabh Bachchan is in great form while portraying a man who has lost all, but not his faith. Sharmila Tagore is wonderful as the protective mother and a supporting wife. Our very own Sanju Baba is as endearing as ever in his short yet commendable role as a mechanic. Sachin Khedkar as the inspector, Amitabh Dayal and Anusha Dandekar also leave a mark with their neat performances.

The film did not taste the deserved box-office success, in spite of an intense story line, a series of fabulous performances and a top-notch cast.

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