Review of the movie “Sahaj Paather Gappo”
Director – manas Mukul Pal
Cast– Samiul Alam, Nur Islam, Sneha Biswas
Overall Rating – 4.5/5
“Sahaj Paather Gappo” is not like the regular movies which keep coming and going every other Friday, it is an experience which you can feel once in a while. It is one movie which has no big names associated with it, no stars, no marketing, no pre release promotion rather it is a movie made by extremely talented creative persons for their own creative satisfaction. Obviously it gives the same satisfaction to its audience, after watching the film.
It is loosely based on short story “Taal Nabami” written by Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay. Here a prelude has been added with the story to make it a full length feature film. It is the story of two little kids Gopal (Samiul Alam) and his younger brother Chhotu (Nur Islam). At a very young age they have to face the hardship of survival as their father who was the only source of income in their poor family, meets with an accident. The accident makes their father bed ridden and the medical expenses took away all their savings whatever they had saved. Situations become so worse that they don’t even have enough money to afford two times meal in a day. Being the elder son Gopal tries to take responsibilities of earning by doing small time works in neighbourhood with his brother Chhotu. They did works like cleaning wells or selling home grown vegetables in local market. Meanwhile they heard about a Janmashtami celebration at an aristocrat Brahmin house in the same locality. There will be a grand feast on this occasion and all the villagers are likely to be invited in that feast. Both the brothers are looking for the feast with their own expectations. For Gopal it will be a big chance to earn some money by selling some palmyras for the feast, on the other hand for little Chhotu it is an opportunity where he can eat delicious foods including Polao (what he pronounces as polua) which he has never seen or eat only has dreamt to eat it once. Finally on the Janmashtami day comes and whose dream turns into reality that has been answered in the climax.
The story is very simple but in a simple way it tells a lot of things which will touch your heart. With its two little protagonists the film celebrates the indomitable spirit of innocent childhood. It shows no hardship can defeat the innocence of a child. No matter whatever happen, the two kids are always hopeful that their life will be back on track. Without being preachy the screenplay brings our attention to so many issues in our society. It shows how our money minded society differentiates between people based on their income. Here one person is considered as upper class only if he has good income, no matter if a poor man has good heart he is not able to qualify as upper class. It will bring lump in your throat when you see two kids are discussing if their father will die or survive but at the same time they are also concerned if they will have something to eat tonight or not. It shows us the importance of food; it’s a basic human need. But it never gave us lecture on any topic rather it shows every hardship through the twinkling eyes of the young kids. The good thing is these two kids are always happy, they have no complaints with their life, they are okay to accept whatever may come in their way and you have no other option than falling in love with these two kids and their spirit. For not a single moment the movie asks for your sympathy for the poor family, it only wants you to love them unconditionally.
Anything said will be too less for director Manas Mukul Pal. Firstly he should be thanked for thinking of a film on this subject and secondly for making it as feature film with such perfection. It is his realistic visualization which has made this a wonderful watch for us. He has been ably supported by the whole cast and crew.
It is hard to believe that two kids Samiul Alam and Nur Islam were actually acting in front of camera between action and cuts; it seems they are really Gopal and Chhotu two innocent kids from a small village. They are extremely talented and syncs with their character properly. Sneha Biswas is brilliant as their mother, a poor housewife who is struggling to run her family. All these three actors have worked perfectly on their local dialect, body language and expressions. Rest of the cast also have given natural performances.
The technical crew is in terrific form. Cinematographer Mrinmoy Mandal and Supratim Bhol have captured the landscapes of the village with sheer brilliance. Art direction, costume and make up are too realistic and authentic. Background score has filled every frame with perfect emotions.
Overall it is a small budget film with a big heart. A story told from heart which connects with your heart. Unfortunately it has been mostly limited to festival circuits only and have been given comparatively smaller scale release in theaters, so you may not get enough shows of the film in your convenient time or at your convenient theater but wherever and whenever possible, watch this film. It is one experience what should not be missed.