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Movie Review : Coffee House

Date: 04/17/2009

Ashutosh Rana and Sakshi Tanwar are a married couple living in the neighborhood of a famous local coffee house. Though Rana runs a street theatre group aimed to create dramas to inspire people and change society practices, he also writes for the newspaper that his wife runs. But conflict arises between the couple when his editorial starts clashing with monetary interests of his wife. Disappointed, he withdraws from writing further for her paper. The couple, apart from various other groups is a regular visitor of the coffee house. Amongst them is a live in relationship couple played by newcomers Aman Dhaliwal and Neha Mishra. Neha is an ambitious girl who dreams of the world riches and wants to become a TV journalist. Then there is also a group of senior people who complain about ill treatment by their grown up children. There is also a trio of modern day Robin Hood of sorts who aim to rob the riches of corrupt bureaucrats. The story takes a major turn when inspired by Rana how this politically aware group belonging to different strata of society try to fight against the wrong practices that are prevalent in the society. At the same time Neha sells her body to a corporate big shot (Harsh Chhaya) and leaves her boyfriend for pursuing her big dreams. What happens when this irks the local politicians and how they decide to break this group’s unity forms the rest of the film.

The film is a well intended attempt and has its heart at the right place but it tries to pack in a lot of things together and none of which is absolutely novel that you never knew existed or haven’t been unfolded on screen before. The movie aims to show the famous coffee culture that is prevalent till today in small towns and few cities like Kolkata where people belonging to diverse culture and financial backgrounds come together to discuss social and political problems on almost a daily basis. The film has its share of hard hitting dialogues especially those mouthed by Ashutosh Rana. “Mein ek vyakti hoon, vastu nahi” he speaks in his impeccable Hindi. Most of the issues that the film raises make sense but the lack of proper production values, technical finesse and script limitations lessen the impact that it could have actually made in the end.

The ensemble cast comprising some of fine acting talents such as the veteran actors Vinod Nagpal (remember TV serial Humlog? He played the father Bassesar Ram) and S.M Zaheer and of course Paintal. Ashutosh Rana is impressive in his act and so famous TV actress Saakshi Tanwar in her first major big screen act after a two bit role in C Kkompany. Debutante Neha Mishra has good screen presence and acts well too. Harsh Chhaya as the smooth talking manipulator is good as usual.

The film is a fair attempt by a first timer director and is an okay watch on a lazy Sunday afternoon if you have nothing else to do but strictly on home video or movie channels.

 

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