Thursday, January 20, 2011

Dasvidaniya... The Best Goodbye Ever

A touching tale of a common man on the verge of death.

With the likes of Vinay Pathak, Rajat Kapoor and Ranvir Shorey coming together in a flick, one certainly hopes to witness a “Coming of age” story. And Dasvidaniya sure does not disappoint the anticipant audience.

Amar Kaul (Vinay Pathak) is a shy middle-class man in his late thirties who works for a gluttony boss (Saurabh Shukla). Amar’s mother (Sarita Joshi) is addicted to the television and can hardly hear a thing lest she uses her hearing aid. Amar leads a subdued life and the only exciting part of his mundane routine involves making a ‘Things to do’ list of his everyday chores. All his life he fails to accomplish anything he wishes to and seems to have lost the race of life. Amar’s life turns upside down when one fine day he learns of his last stage stomach cancer.

Vinay, in a way, has played a double role in the film; the second being that of his alter ego, his conscience that steps out of him and forces him to ponder on his life till date. Amar learns to live life to the fullest only when death arrives at his doorstep. He starts off on a journey to fulfill his wishes and becomes a completely transformed man in the last three months of his life. The gradual sense of achievement he experiences is beautifully brought out in the film as he checks off each item on his ‘Things to do before I die’ list.

The crux of the movie lies in its performances. Vinay Pathak’s sincere portrayal of his role calls for a big applause. Such a natural actor he is that one almost instantly connects with his character and feels his anguish, his disappointments in life with the same intensity. Vinay completely lives the popular adage ‘Silence speaks louder than words’ when he expresses his unvoiced love to his childhood crush Neha on a rainy night. It is undoubtedly one of the best scenes in the film. Neha Dhupia is surprisingly good in her act. Rajat Kapoor is perfect as Amar’s long-lost friend. Ranvir Shorey, Gaurav Gera, Saurabh Shukla and Sarita Joshi are equally good in their respective roles.

Debutant director Shashant Shah's fine treatment of the script adds to the simplicity of the film. In Toto, Dasvidaniya is an engaging movie; you laugh with it, you cry with it and you also carry a message home: ‘Live life to the fullest’.

P.S: Prior to watching the film I had a feeling that ‘Dasvidaniya’ should be some Sanskrit originated Hindi word. Instead, it turned out to be an impure form of the Russian word for ‘goodbye’. I was partially right though, as the Russian language is believed to have close resemblance to the mother of all Indian languages Sanskrit’.

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