The movie "Autograph" from the very onset,has been projected as a tribute to Satyajit Ray's "Nayak".So,many may try to draw unfair comparisons between the two.But,in reality,Autograph,except its basic premise,is hardly similar to Ray's masterpiece.So, the promotional strategy must be condemned in this regard.
The story of "Autograph" goes like this.Arun Chatterjee(Prosenjit)is an esteemed actor and quite arrogant in nature.Looking for a role to showcase his star status and prowess,he decides to act and produce on the script of a budding filmmaker Subhabrata Mitra(Indraneil).The script,tentatively titled "Aajker Nayak"is an adaptation of "Nayak".Subho then pursues his live-in girlfriend Srinandita(Nandana)to play the role of Jahnavi,the leading heroine of the movie.As the shoot progressed ,Arun developed a soft corner for Srin and they came close to each other mentally.But this leads to lot of complications and complexities in their lives,which bind their lives and force them to separate themselves from each other,each trying to find a new meaning to life.
The movie gives equal weightage to all its three principal characters.Indraneil excels in the role of the ambitious filmmaker.The way the chase to achieve success makes him more and more ruthless and arrogant has been portrayed beautifully in a couple of sequences-His changing attitude towards his crew and a contrast towards the end,where he shuts the window on the face of a beggar boy he used to give money previously.
Nandana does quite well as Srin,though of all 3 characters,this one was slightly one-dimensional.
Over the last 2 years,Prosenjit has shifted sight from mindless commercial movies to substance-oriented movie and we movie-lovers must be thankful to him for that,because nobody in Tollygunge could have played Arun Chatterjee more subtly and realistically than Prosenjit.He gets to the skin of the character and more than words,he mostly portrays the loneliness,humiliation,arrogance through his expressions.
As a first time director,Srijit does a good job in putting up a collage of scenes and characters that move you,and gives space to his characters to flourish,but on a negative viewpoint,the screenplay should have been tighter,the film could have been curtailed to around 2 hours,and despite the fact that the movie is based on the bonding of the 3 characters rather than film within a film,Srijit seems to be in a dilemma as to how much he would showcase the film-within-film part.
The music is a high point."Amake amar moto thakte dao" composed,penned and sung by Anupam Roy is fabulous.But the other songs ,Debojyoti Mishra compositions,"Beche Thakar Gaan","Chal Rastay" are equally good.Special mention of the lyricists,Anupam and Srijato.No doubt,the best album of the dacade.
Soumik Halder weaves magic behind the camera.
Overall,Autograph as a contrast to Dui Prithibi is not quite massy,more concentrated towards an elite section,but it has its own language of speaking of relationships,their complexities and their impact in a very elegant manner.An effort to encourage for sure.Venkatesh Films must be credited for giving this movie enough opportunity to reach and influence people.