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Movie Review | Shaadistan: A subtle cry for women empowerment

Movie Review | Shaadistan: A subtle cry for women empowerment

Shaadistan movie review is here. Starring Kirti Kulhari, Nivedita Bhattacharya, Medha Shankar, Rajan Modi & Kay Kay Menon in pivotal roles. Shaadistan directed by Raj Singh Chaudhary will launch on Disney+ Hotstar VIP on 11th June 2021 under the banner of Disney+ Hotstar Multiplex.

Shaadistan Movie Review

She sways to that ‘yeh sach’ rock number on stage and charms her way in that denim shorts and jacket while she performs the rock folk fusion lehariya on a Rajasthani wedding. While the other keeps a constant check on her pallu (ghoongat) and waits for the permission of her dear hubby even for a tea.

Meet Sasha (Kirti Kulhari) – the Rockstar – lead singer of her fusion rock band and bhabhiji / auntiji – mother of a daughter (Medha Shankar) who is about to hit the age of 18 in a day and also getting engaged on the same day. Papaji (Rajan Modi) is more concerned about the society than the khwaish (desire) of his daughter and wife.

The world of Sasha and bhabhiji / auntiji collide when this family has to board a bus carrying Sasha’s rock band to Rajasthan.

Sasha and her band consisting of four young and free-spirited musicians are scheduled to perform at the wedding which this sanskari family has to attend and where the daughter of bhabhiji / auntiji will get engaged.

Meanwhile during the journey as the family – metaphor of the tradition and society we live in. The free-spirited musicians – the similia of freedom, equality share their glares and discomfort, comes an escapist movement – Tigerji urf Rajaji (Kay Kay Menon) a member of an aristocratic Rajasthani family who have turned their haveli into a resort.

A halt for a couple of hours at the palace results in something unexpected.

Director Raj Singh Chaudhary (writer – Gulaal, No Smoking, actor – Gulaal, Antardwand, Black Friday) puts the point of gender bias, equality, freedom, womanhood forward by using a musical road trip format.

The radical opening of the movie is a clear-cut influence of Anurag Kashyap but later Raj Singh Chaudhary settles down and adds fusion of rock music with folk that twines the cultures of the family and the rock band.

However, the debate is limited and lacks the sweeping impact though it makes its point.

The highlights are the moments between Sasha and the girl’s mother.

The two contrast worlds of Sasha and the girl’s mother are nicely coined with the fusion of rock and Rajasthani folk during the proceedings as the movie moves on and this is where the movie starts breathing its own life.

Kirti Kulhari is excellent as Sasha, Nivedita Bhattacharya is fantastic and very natural as the girl’s mother. Medha Shankar has her moments. Rajan Modi is fine. Kay Kay Menon is a pleasant surprise.

The director has cast real musicians and that works especially in the scene when Ajay plays the violin in one of the striking scenes.

The Tibetan guitarist and Apurva Dogra too contribute nicely to the movie.

Nakul Sharma’s music suits the theme.

Finally

Shaadistan has flaws, it puts the point of gender discrimination, freedom, womanhood forward only to an extent. Debates on the institution of marriage with some sparks but lacks the fire which can spread like a storm. Still it’s a decent subtle cry for women empowerment backed by some fine performances. Going with a generous 3 an extra for the acting and music.


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