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Movie Review: Shor In The City

A mixed bag- terrific, experimental cinema with cinematic delicacy but could have been exceptional.

By Jyotsna Kumar

Delhi 6, Dhobi Ghaat they both had themes, they both lacked story in particular yet they spoke to us, some ignored but some understood and now Shor in the City joins this league, as it tried something similar. One maddening city and three different stories, Shor in the City is a social fabric on the city Mumbai-the city where there is so much noise that doesn’t allow you to even hear your own sound at times, and at times you need the noise to absorb all other noises.

You must have noticed those curious faces of your friends and family the moment you step out of a theater after watching a recent flick. They all want to know the story of the film but is that trend still on or is it a passé? Hard to tell, because these days a whole lot of movie-makers are experimenting with different narratives on different subjects and so there’s hardly any story to converse but lot to discuss with respect to the theme. Shor in the City is one such flick where the theme overpowers respective plots in the film.

The narrative flags-off with the chronicles of Ganesh Chatturthi where Abhay (Sendhil Ramamurthy) –the NRI, trying to set-up a small business. In his quest to earn profit he’s encountered with unfriendly trio who forcibly offer him help only to reveal their murkier side to extort hefty extortion money.

On the other side, there is another bunch of threesome- Tilak (Tusshar Kapoor), Mandook (Pitobash Tripathy) and Ramesh (Nikhil Dwiwedi) who hopelessly engage into petty thefts and one day manage to slip out a bagful of arms and a bomb from a shady guy in a local train. The movie has explored the eccentricities and craziness of these characters to the hilt. When at one instance, Mandook needs some thrill in life as he decides to explode the bomb live in the city as he’s never seen anything being blown-up alive, and so the trio goes ahead with the plan. The dichotomy of the situation is when they have to travel the length and breadth of the city on Tilak’s motor-bike to locate an empty spot as Mumbai is never empty. And when they finally narrowed down a spot, the place still finds a kiddo roaming around. Also, during the climax, amidst the animosity, the trio provides a their every bit of humour when at the time of bank robbery Tilak quickly withdraws and says-“Main sirf moral support ke liye aaya hoon” and

Ramesh is disappointed to see only eight thousand rupees in the bank, and so, he waits for the bank manager to open the locks.

The third angle of the film revolves around an aspiring cricketer-Savan (Sundeep Kishan) who is hopelessly in love with his neighbour who is soon to be wed and on the other hand, needs ten lacks to give as a bribe to one of the T20 match selector.

The chaos and madness are the very substance of Shor in the City but somewhere the soul of the film, a concrete story is missing. The characters were well etched out where you feel sympathy for Abhay-caught up in the cobweb of hooligans. Sincerity in the eyes of Tilak, who runs a pirated publishing business but despite of it displays high degree of principles and moral values. Also, Tilak’s simplicity comes across naturally when he finds out ‘the deep philosophy’ of life in the pages of The Alchemist. Savan’s frustration and helplessness is relatable. But on the other hand, Tilak’s wife Sapna and Preeti Desai, Sharmili and Radhika characters are not given much attention hence; their characters are lost in the film. The music is fabulous especially the track Sahibo and Karma is a bitch, only if they were used well. The editing could have been sharp. The writing is refreshing, the screenplay is engaging on many instances comedy is not forced and is situational. The cinematography is ok and the sound is one department that deserves all applause especially after the bomb explosion sequence. The performances are exceptional but it was Pitobash Tripathy performance as Mandook that takes the cake. His peculiarities are so convincing that you beg for more screen time of his.

All in all, after long time, good news for the cine-goers but my only suggestion is that don’t keep your hopes so high and for those who come with the expectation that it’s a dark comedy then it’s not. And now a big round of applause to Ekta Kapoor and her banner who give us a daily dose of tears through her Saans-Bahu drama on idiot box but on the other hand treat us to the terrific, experimental cinema as cinematic delicacies. Woman, you are complete paradox in that retrospect. Final word for the director duo- Raj-Krishna, a very good attempt which could have been exceptional.

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Comments (2)
  • Mnajula- 10 years ago

    Very true. Superb review

  • rajesh- 10 years ago

    the movie was a refreshing one. quite unexpected, from ekta kapoor. and tushar kapoor and nikhil dwivedi came in a surprise package. loved their performences