Completely based in the U.S.A, the film starts with us looking at Kuhu (Padmapriya) and Pradeep (Prosenjit) having their dinner. Just as it looks like any other dinner situation, Pradeep tries to make a confession which leaves Kuhu shattered. Kuhu moves to her parent’s place with their kids and eventually leaves the kids there for a while before going on to spend some time by herself in her uncle’s apartment that’s lying unused. The story then keeps moving back & forth in time, so that we get to figure out what went wrong between Kuhu and Pradeep. We are also introduced to another couple-Ushashi and Ronojoy who are friends of Kuhu and Pradeep. Due to some unexpected turn of events the lives of all these 4 characters get intertwined and we the audience, remain charged up as spectators in this interesting tale of relationships.
The characters remain grounded, there are no flashy dialogues and a lot of emotions are conveyed sometimes through silence or mere expressions. Padmapriya reminded me of Tabu throughout the film. Kalyan Ray’s desperate attempt to escape from everything seemed unnecessary to me.
Another interesting aspect of the film is that while the U.S is increasingly familiar to us through umpteen Indian films being shot over there, Aparajita Tumi tries to be really different. While there are shots of cities like Miami, San Fransico, New York etc, there is an attempt to capture these cities in a hitherto unexplored manner. And more than the parts shot against urban landscapes it’s the outdoors that really impress. The outdoor locales are certainly inspiring and the contrast is stark, almost deliberate keeping the requirement of the plot. Ranjan Palit’s cinematography also makes the visuals look impressive whether it be the outdoors or the soft interiors.
The turnaround in the film (though you may not realize it while watching it) incidentally comes in the form of a party where the veteran actor Soumitra Chatterjee makes his presence felt. Soumitra plays himself and it’s amusing to see the people in the party ask him questions like how was the experience of working with Satyajit Ray, Madhabi Mukherjee etc; it also makes you wonder initially as to why the sequence was all that necessary. Post watching the movie and having read Aniruddha’s take on the entire story is why I now realize the importance of the entire sequence.
Talking about performances Padmapriya has done justice to the character of Kuhu, a role that gives her a lot of scope to perform and not fall under any stereotype. Kamalinee Mukherjee looks gorgeous as Ushashi and that itself is half a victory as the role demands sensuality without being showy. Chandan Roy Sanyal as Ronojoy the ( Kaminey & Mahanagar @Kolkata guy) is efficient but unfortunately the character doesn’t reach out to us much.Well done Chandan Roy Sanyal, you have done justice to the role. Indraneil Sengupta as Yusuf, the Bangladeshi former lover of Kuhu fits the bill. Prosenjit as the husband and father of two kids and as someone who feels different from his wife on a lot of things, he’s convincing.
There is a strong sexual undercurrent throughout the film but then its shown in a very aesthetic fashion and there’s nothing for mere titillation. Having said all this I do wonder why there wasn’t any attempt to explore the relationships between Kuhu and Pradeep and Ushashi and Ronojoy a little more in depth. What we see in the film is a stage that all 4 of them have reached in their respective relationships and it would have also been good to know the course of how it all emerged. That would have made the overall construct even more enjoyable. As you leave from the screening you may be happy, unhappy or plainly disappointed but much later if it makes you think about the plot or the characters like it has been in my case, then it must certainly be heartening for Aniruddha and his team.
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