Drishtikone movie review: Intriguing plot, strong performances undone by needless complexity

Bhaskar Chattopadhyay

Apr 29, 2018 17:50:17 IST


Kaushik Ganguly’s latest Bengali film Drishtikone tells the story of Srimoti, who has lost her husband to a fatal car accident, and Jiyon — a partially blind lawyer she has hired to investigate the mysterious circumstances surrounding the said accident. There are several plot elements thrown into the pot and each has its own distinct flavour, but unfortunately, they never really come to together to make one wholesome delectable meal, leaving us unsatisfied in the end.

Rituparna Sengupta plays Srimoti Sen, who is married to a renowned ophthalmologist in the city of Kolkata. The fact that they are childless weighs heavily upon Srimoti, although she finds her husband supporting her at all times and showering her with unconditional love. When a car accident leaves her husband dead and his elder brother paralysed from the waist down, Srimoti begins to suspect foul play. In order to fight her husband’s case, she hires a lawyer named Jiyon Mitra, who lost both his eyes to a freak infection but has regained vision in one after a successful cornea transplant. As Jiyon begins to investigate the case, Srimoti finds herself being increasingly attracted to his serene reserve. As the two embark upon a dangerous relationship that threatens to break Jiyon’s home, the truth behind the accident slowly begins to emerge.

Drishtikone movie review: Intriguing plot, strong performances undone by needless complexity

Poster for Drishtikone

While the premise is an interesting one and promises a great story, writer and director Kaushik Ganguly can’t seem to hold the multiple plotlines together to give us a refreshing cinematic experience. Some of the plotlines are stretched too thin to make an impact, while others are rushed to such an alarming degree that the moment you blink, you miss more than you can afford to. It is this uneven pace that offers us an annoying and bumpy ride — all of which culminates into what can be best described as a rather uninspiring plot twist that reminds us of a certain Michael Connelly novel. The track of Srimoti and Jiyon’s romantic relationship seems to go on and on forever, so much so that the focus on everything else is sacrificed at the drop of a hat. This despite the fact that the overall ‘mood’ of the film is sombre, and hence effortlessly spot-on. That the film resembles a glittering but ill-shaped crystal three-quarters into its running time is no surprise at all. And it remains so even when the climax arrives with the promise of a resolution. Had the makers invested a little more time in developing the script, the film wouldn’t have had to suffer this away.

Almost all the performances, however, hit the bullseye, and the credit for this goes to the film’s casting. Rituparna Sengupta plays Srimoti, the grieving widow who is standing as the crossroads of life, unsure of her feelings towards the lawyer investigating her husband’s death. She alternates between frail and strong, and comes across as a woman who is battling a dilemma in her mind and losing badly with each passing day. Prasenjit Chatterjee plays the half-blind lawyer with great skill and conviction towards his character. He is torn between his love for his beautiful family and the woman he genuinely cares for. It is Chatterjee’s solid and oh-so-natural performance which is the highlight of the film. He is in complete command of his craft, and he comes across as an actor who has given his role some serious thought.

In other roles, Churni Ganguly plays the lawyer’s wife with ease and grace. She succeeds in making us feel for her, and to her credit, she does this without having to try too hard. Kaushik Ganguly is once again magnificent as the dead doctor’s paralysed elder brother, now confined to a wheelchair after the accident.

Despite boasting of some great performances though, the film fails to have the desired impact mainly because it tries to grapple with too many things at the same time and ends up not doing justice to any of them. It is an exercise in complexity merely for the sake of it. You may have heard about too many cooks spoiling the broth. Drishtikone is a classic example of too many ingredients spoiling the broth, leaving a rather dull and insipid aftertaste.

Updated Date: Apr 29, 2018 17:50:17 IST