Movie Review: A Wednesday

I saw “A Wednesday” yesterday. And here is what I think – its a superb muvee. And if better not wait till a wednesday to watch this movie. Watch it TODAY!

Its a movie driven by 2 big factors-  and I am counting some great acting by Naseer, Kher, Shergill and Bashir as just one of them. The other is some very tight editing. All of about 100 minutes, the movie keeps you with the motions all through. And there are these minor subtleties, attention to detail that you should/can not miss.

Coming to a detailed download of what I really liked –

Lead actors-  Nobody doubts their skills anyway. But Naseeruddin Shah and Anupam Kher are talents that have been wasted more often than they have been utilized by mainstream bollywood. Some of their finest performances are relegated to the perjoratively called parallel cinema. But here comes a movie, where Naseer crafts yet another mindblowing performance. And needless to say, he does not need to Ham, speak too many dialogues, get into mindless histrionics, and break into a song and dance routine to do this. From the first shot, his body language is that of a frustrated common man trying to game the system. There is nothing about him that makes him stand out from the crowd. Anupam Kher, on the other hand, is the second in command here. A more routine role of a Police Commissioner does not stop him from acting his heart out though. You can see an officer worn with age and different frustrations, and who has started getting amused by the trivialities of a police job (such as an actor running for security at the first possible threat, or using the minority card for no reason or the innumerable times he might have been forced to submit under political pressure). I read somewhere that the only scene where these actors come together, Anupam wanted it re-shot simply because he felt that he did not play his part as well as Naseer played his. When you see the scene, you realize that there is nothing that either of the two could have done better in that shot.

Lest I forget mentioning Jimmy Shergill and Amir Bashir – these two have done a great job. Its good to see Jimmy Shergill stick to what he is good at. A restrained and angry role. With a bare minimum set of dialogues, you still see his screen presence. Amir Bashir is equally good as the dependable cop. The bus scene where the extremists are trying to instigate the two and bothe Jimmy and Amir are not speaking, their face expressions are wonderful.

Others are ok, and have carried the movie through. Because of these four, they largely becamme unnoticeable. Especially, Deepal Shaw.

Story – Refreshing, to say the least. The best thing – they never reveal the name of the commoner out to game the system lest it be construed as a religion sentiment. Because the movie, in my head, belongs to the genre of thrillers, and not as much to the genre of “serious cinema”. There are a lot of implicitly answered questions which a lot of movies spend too much time answering. Commissioner having clear ideas about an encounter, or him realizing that there are no bombs and yet ordering the final acquiescence. The entire room changing their personal stand on the situation without altering their professional stand.

Simplicity – the story is not about using too many gizmos and gadgets to befuddle the system. It uses basic information that probably is available on the internet to blow the daylights out of an outdated system. At some point, a young college dropout says as much to the commissioner of police. It treats the story like a common man’s set of questions – whats stopping the terrorists to bomb this particular local railway station? Where is the security? These fat hawaldars? What if I just leave a bag somewhere here? Can I hack someone’s cell? etc.

Editing/Direction – its all of 100 minutes long. And does not lose you at any point in the movie. Keeps moving. At quick pace. Its moving at such a pace that even Naseer looking at his watch looks like an aberration! 🙂 Neeraj Pandey – You rock!  Sorry – Pandey ji!! You rock!

Overall – please please watch it. It is shameful that we keep saying that bolllywood does not come up with good cinema, and let these occasional wonderful movies not become the commercial successes that they deserve to be!

%d bloggers like this: