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Movie Review – Vinci Da by Srijit Mukherji

 

The Übermensch (meaning super-human) is a concept developed by philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. In his book ‘Thus Spake Zaruthastra’ Nietzsche describes how God is dead and it is up to the Übermensch to set the world in order, for a better future. Srijit Mukherji borrows this concept in his latest venture ‘Vinci Da’ – a psychological thriller that questions the very concept of what is good and evil.

Vinci Da is the story of a mentally-deranged man Adi Bose, who considers himself Nietzsche’s Übermensch. A ‘lawyer’ by choice, Adi had a troubled childhood (having murdered his own father, just half an hour before turning 18; thus avoiding capital punishment) – more of that later. Adi Bose is law unto himself, who does not care about a few ‘collateral damages’ in this war against law-breakers who escape justice because of the corrupt system.

To bring his ‘noble cause’ to fruition, Adi Bose hires the services of a prosthetics make-up artist in Tollywood – Vinci Da. A Leonardo Da Vinci fanatic, Vinci Da finds it hard to find work in Tolly-para because of his uprightness and refusal to budge from the righteous stand. Inadvertently, his artistic acumen suffers as he is forced to earn a livelihood by working for local drama companies. It is not a surprise that he laps up the proposal of a challenging work from Adi Bose, which will demonstrate to the world the wonders he has up his sleeves.

What follows is an intense Ken and Abel-esque clash between two ideas. Vinci Da is torn between his artistic enterprises and the hapless suffering the innocent ‘collaterals’ have to bear. Adi Bose, on the other hand, metamorphoses from the vigilante who wants to rid the society from law-breakers into a shrewd, manipulative, power-hungry villain who would stop at nothing. In signature-Srijit Mukherji style, the duel enters the final act with a bang and curtains fall with a dramatic twist. Fate has the artist imprisoned in his own work.

‘Vinci Da’ may not be Srijit Mukherji’s best work, but surely is among the front-runners to qualify as his best five films. With power-packed performances by the two leading actors, hard-hitting dialogues (a forte of Srijit Mukherji), spellbinding art direction, foot-tapping music by Anupam Roy and the brilliant use of lighting in some scenes, Vinci Da easily makes an impact. The chemistry that Ritwick Chakraborty (Adi Bose) and Rudranil Ghosh (Vinci Da) share would remind one of Feluda and Maganlal Meghraj.

There are scenes in the film, which stay with you. The dream sequence where Leonardo Da Vinci is painting Mona Lisa – with Rudranil and Sohini’s voiceovers, or the sequence before the interval where Adi Bose demolishes Vinci Da’s reverence from Da Vinci, are truly of international standards. And then, there is the gruesome murder sequence in the beginning of the film. Riddhi Sen hits the ball out of the stadium as young Adi Bose.

Alas, after all the memes and videos on DCDD Poddar, one had to satisfy themselves with a scene or two of the enigmatic character – forever in pursuit of Bose and Vinci Da. Even in his short presence on screen, Anirban Bhattacharya is a beacon that shines bright. As does Sohini Sarkar as Vinci Da’s love interest, and a pivotal character who significantly influences the game of nerves between Adi Bose and Vinci Da. The hasty climax and jarring background score in some scenes are the only sore-points in an otherwise Srijit-esque thriller.

As I had said in my immediate reaction on Facebook after watching the film, Vinci Da is more psychological than thriller. The film provokes you to think and question your belief-systems. Notwithstanding Nietzsche and Übermensch, Vinci Da is also a socio-political commentary on the daily mockery of democracy in our country, that has become the mainstay.

May be, our very own Übermensch will rise from within.

My Rating: 3.5/5 stars

DISCLAIMER: All Images Used In This Post Have Their Respective Copyrights

Movie Review: Open Tee Bioscope

open tee bioscope review

Childhood is considered by most as the best period of life. Carefree life, vacations, para-cricket, first crush, friends who mean life to you – school days truly are memorable for anyone. Anindya Chatterjee, after gifting Bengalis classic compositions for decades, turned to direction with adolescent friendship as the theme of his debut venture.

If you grew up in the 1990s, you will surely fall in love with this film right from the first frame. From the nostalgic “Open Tee Bioscope” song that marked our childhood to the first puff of cigarette on the terrace, para friends, pranks on neighbours, wall graphiti and the political nuisance defined early ’90s – Anindya da has beautifully crafted the narrative.

The story is of Fowara – a rebel who has been expelled from school for beating up the hostel warden, and has returned to his North Kolkata para. The first half of the film is like a leisurely Sunday morning; the film is emotional yet fun. Anindya Chatterjee’s brand of humor is not crass as we often encounter in films these days.

There is a child-like innocence in the treatment of the film. Therein lies the beauty of Open Tee Bioscope. The film does not boast of being a high-on-cerebral artsy film nor is it a formulaic remake of any South India flick. It is an honest retelling of the most innocent days in any person’s life – everyone sitting in the audience can identify with.

Technically the film is not out of the world. There are moments that make it worth cherishing forever – the Dashami scene on the terrace or Fowara’s coming-of-age moment with his mentor the night before the match. As usual, Chandrabindoo’s music is brilliant as always – you cannot get enough of it (I am glued to the album on Saavn all day).

The film is a treat to watch because of the cast. Everyone has acted so flawlessly, one would wonder if the were for real. The chemistry between Baishaki (Sudipta) and Fowara (Riddhi Sen) is fabulous. Even in his small screen time, Paran Bandyopadhyay wins hearts. Rajatava Dutta is the darling para-kaku while Aparajita Adhya is your PNPC-loving middle class aunty who is good at heart.

Over all, Open Tee Bioscope is a nostalgia trip which would make you want to call up your best friend and arrange a school reunion. It is only when you watch films like these when you realise “Those were the days”.

Thank you Anindya Da.

My Rating: 4/5 Stars

DISCLAIMER: All Images Used In This Post Have Their Respective Copyrights

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