Review of “Dwitiyo Purush” – Much more than just a crime thriller
Director – Srijit Mukherji
Cast – Parambrata Chatterjee, Anirban Bhattacharya, Raima Sen, Rwitobroto Mukherjee, Gaurav Chakrabarty
At one point in the film, senior inspector Abhijit Pakrashi tells his subordinate, what makes any regular killer different from a serial killer is his or her motive behind the crime. It is absolutely true, it is the motive that adds more impact to any crime. The same is true for a crime thriller as well. After watching it for once, when an audience already knows the twists, it is the motive of the crime that keeps him engaged with the film on repeat viewing. On repeat watch one can discover new layers of the characters adding the motive with them. This makes the difference between an ordinary whodunit thriller with a cult thriller. Baishe Srabon had that quality and that is why it is still everyone’s favourite even after nine years. Dwitiyo Purush also have a motive with similar impact and it will surely help the film to leave a long lasting impression. Being a sequel the comparisons are inevitable but one must remember any film takes some time to grow in mind, Baishe Srabon has achieved that cult status in these long nine years with several watches, so it will be unfair to compare it with Dwitiyo Purush which is yet to complete a week.
Like most of the films directed by Srijit Mukherji, Dwitiyo Purush also follows a non-linear narrative style. The story begins in 1993, when a teenager criminal Khoka (Rwitobroto Mukherjee), a local gang leader from china town area, killed three guys back to back. After every murder he used to embed his name on the forehead of the victim as his signature style. Later he was caught by a police officer that lead him to juvenile correction home in the beginning followed by imprisonment for long term. After 25 years, a grown up Khoka (Anirban Bhattacharya) gets released from jail and at the same time similar type of murders starts happening in the city, in same areas, in same pattern. Senior Inspector Abhijit Pakrashi (Parambrata Chatterjee) is assigned to investigate these murders along with a junior officer Rajat (Gaurav Chakrabarty). Their responsibility is to find out if Khoka is doing the murders again or it is someone else who is copying his style, also they need to figure out the motive behind these murders so that they can trap the murderer. Along side this crime investigation there is a parallel track that deals with Abhijit’s personal crisis, his married life with Amrita (Raima Sen) in on the verge on divorce. As we all know from the earlier film, these two people Abhijit and Amrita love each other very much but they have lots of differences as well and it has continued in this film. Also their love story is incomplete with the third angle Surya Sinha (Abir Chatterjee). He is still the friend-zoned one sided lover who does not hesitate to offer his shoulder to a sobbing Amrita. This love triangle does not add anything new to the film as it is mostly repetitive but still as we are already invested in these three characters for such a long period that they do not make us feel bore. But the same can not be said about the unnecessary track between Rajat and his girlfriend (Ridhima Ghosh). Even if it could have been utilized to add some emotion but because of Rishima’s poor performance it fails to add anything significant to the film.
The first half is little slow as nothing much happened, it mainly goes in establishing the characters and plot which is acceptable. The story starts becoming more interesting in the second half but even in the second half there are some unnecessary scenes including the one where Abhijit decides to make peace with his wife Amrita after watching Emraan Hashmi kissing Mallika Shehrawat on TV, such a lazy plot point is completely unexpected from an efficient writer like Srijit Mukherji. This particular scene is followed by a completely unwanted song which acts as a roadblock. But all these shortcomings have been well compensated by the mind blowing twist in the climax. One can predict it partially as there are some hints throughout the film for intelligent audience but no one can guess the twist in total. Of course there are logical loopholes but as long as the twist in the tale is gripping such small loopholes can be overlooked. The climax is not just shocking and unpredictable but it is also very bold. Kudos to writer duo Srijit Mukherji and Suvonkar Banerjee for going with such a brave ending. It has the risk of not getting accepted by a certain section of people but still they have showed the courage.
The whole film was shot in just 12 days and after watching it one must understand it was not a cake walk for the whole team. It is not a drama confined in a room , rather lot of thing is happening in real locations that too in two different time periods. A director has to be fully prepared with a crystal clear vision about what he is going to shoot before hitting the floors, to finish a film of this scale in such a short span of time. Srijit Mukherji definitely deserves his due credits for that. He also deserves credit for writing clap worthy dialogues specially the smart one liners which reminds of Baishe Srabon. He is so good at playing with words that he can utilize some old Shahrukh Khan songs at its best by using it for a character who is a huge SRK fan. The technical team also is in solid form. Special mention is needed for cinematographer Soumik Halder, the way he has captured the crime scenes in the narrow alleys of China town that is breath taking. He has been ably supported by the impressive background score by Indraadip Das Gupta. The production design team have also done a commendable job by maintaining authenticity with minute details for the portions from the 90’s. In Baishe Srabon, Anupam Roy’s music was a big USP but unfortunately this time it does not impress much. Only the reprised version of Je Kawta Din works with the narrative. This is not completely Anupam’s fault because the other songs has not been used well in the film. For example the song Abar Phire Ele is there for two times, first time it works as a roadblock but the same song with same lines creates much more impact in the second time as that time it fits well with the situation.
Among the actors, it is definitely Parambrata Chatterjee and Anirban Bhattacharya who have shined the most in one of their career best performances. Parambrata has wonderfully relived the character of Abhijit Pakrashi, keeping in mind every minute mannerism of the character from the earlier film. Along with that he has added the maturity that the character has gained in last nine years. He is efficient throughout the film but watch out for him in the emotional break down scene with Raima just before the climax, he has performed extra ordinary in that scene. In last two years the kind of variety Anirban Bhattacharya have shown as an actor, many other actors could not do that in their whole acting career. He is one fine actor who can mould himself in any character and Srijit Mukherji knows it so well. Once again Anirban has done stupendous job in a new look and never before seen avatar.
Among the others, Rwitobroto Mukherjee has shined as young Khoka. So far he was typecast as sweet soft spoken teenager from middle class family but here Srijit Mukherji has done a complete makeover of his image and he has done full justice with his director’s vision. Raima Sen has nothing much to do but she has maintained continuity of her character from the first part. Abir Chatterjee has precious little to do but his charming screen presence is enough for his fans to skip a heart beat. Also the way the popular jokes of daal bhaat and biriyani has been used in his scenes that makes it more special. Gaurav Chakraborty has repeated himself in a good for nothing character. Babul Supriyo is there in a character modeled on Prabir Roy Chowdhury from Baishe Srabon but he has been proved a completely wrong choice for the character. Soham Maitra has done a good job. He has very limited screen time, but he is more effective here than his earlier film where he had played almost parallel lead. It is good to see Subhra Sourav Das in a mainstream film after so long. Unfortunately his acting talent has been suppressed badly with an irritating accent.
Overall Dwitiyo Purush is much more than just a crime thriller, it is an engaging drama that blends so many other emotions along with murder mystery. It evokes nostalgia for Baishe Srabon at the same time it adds new thrill and a new character to fall in love. Do not try to compare it with Baishe Srabon and do not divert your mind for guessing the twist rather be calm and watch the film the way the director wants to unfold it and you will definitely not get disappointed.