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A Marathi movie based on a play by the same name, Katyar Kaljat Ghusali is a journey of two maestros Pandit Shastri & Khansaheb as they experience fame, failure & betrayal. The movie is being considered for the UNESCO’s Fellini medal.

Katyar Kaljat Ghusali (film).jpg

Cast: Sachin Pilgaonkar, Shankar Mahadevan, Subodh Bhave, Amruta Khanvilkar, Mrunmayee Deshpande

Director: Subodh Bhave

Language: Marathi

Year: 2015

My mother had watched the original play when it was running in theaters in the 1960s & hence was eager to watch this movie. Unfortunately we could not make it as she fell ill on the day we were supposed to go. Finally I had the chance to watch it when it was telecast on ZEE Marathi a few weeks ago.

*SPOILERS*

What I like:

  • Casting: The casting is perfect. Every single person, be it the main heroes like Khansaheb or Panditji or even side characters like the two stooges of Khansaheb, has been perfectly cast. The voice of Reema Lagoo as the ‘katyar’ is mesmerizing.
  • Khansaheb: The character of Khansaheb is very well written. The man remains true to his character from start to finish. His daughter is the only one who recognized him for the opportunist he truly was even as he kept fooling the entire world by hiding behind his true self behind his talent. In the last scene as well the opportunistic nature is what saves him from punishment even as he hides behind the token of ‘connoisseur’ which Sadashiv & Panditji are so keen to bestow on him.
  • The music & songs: Shankar Mahadevan & Rahul Deshpande are outstanding in all their songs. Though as in most musicals it does get a little boring when every person breaks out into a song in every five minute but even then you can sit through all of it & even enjoy the songs even when you have no knowledge of the sur taal.
  • Zareena: I loved this character as well. A strong woman who will speak the truth even if it means going against her father. It would have been great to see Sadashiv or even Uma do half the things this brave girl did in order to secure justice for Panditji.

What I did not like:

  • Panditji & Sadashiv: I think the story is too much tilted in favour of Khansaheb, so much so that it ignores these two characters to a great extent. Panditji’s character holds interest till he is cheated by Khansaheb. Sadashiv’s character holds interest till he accepts to be the slave of Khansaheb. The age old bug of stupidity disguised as greatness bites these two potential heroes & then there is no turning back. It all becomes very one dimensional after that & even in the end Sadashiv wins because Khansaheb decides to save face & accept defeat than risk the chance of his true colours being revealed. The movie would have been much better if at least Sadashiv actually fought for his Guru’s rights rather than turning it all into an educational experience.

The total inaction on Sadashiv’s & Panditji’s part made it a one time watch for me. Before ending this post I must mention that the idea of summoning glow worms with your singing is divine. Do that in front of a girl & she is going to be very very impressed! 😉

 

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