We get the 'Megh' bit here. But sadly, it's a lot of 'Megh' and very little of 'Roddur'.
What happens when a superstar comes visiting your sleepy town? Especially when you happen to be a nondescript bookstall owner. She walks into your store, flashes her beaming smile and catches a book thief just as he's about to scoot with a title or two. He asks for her autograph as flashes of recognition wash across his face. "
Oti bhakti chorer lokkhon
", she writes.
Anna Scott of
is Madhuja Sen of Megh Roddur. But Subhashree's feeble attempt at pulling off a Julia Roberts falls flat on its face. Surajit Dhar's ambitious project begins mimicking the Hollywood original with montages of Subhashree aka Madhuja Sen and her glamorous life. Thirty minutes into the movie, viewers, at least those who are familiar with Roger Mitchell's 1999 flick, are left wincing. Newbie Palash plays Hugh Grant's William Thackeray. His life is peppered by an eccentric sister, a wheelchair-bound former-love interest-now-married-to-the-
best friend and Bachhu - an uncouth youth who aspires to be a rockstar someday. He is Arpan's, played by Palash, roomie and makes even Spike (Rhys Efans) of
- the crazy Welsh and, of course, Thackeray's roommate, look like a thorough gentleman in comparison.
For someone who is used to working for a certain banner in Tollywood,
was Subhashree's biggest chance of proving her mettle as a character actress. She's a star, the heroine, the diva. Every diva has her own demons to fight, her own dilemmas to resolve. That sense of conflict, that angst and unrest was lacking in her acting. She doesn't talk about the pains it took her to reach this level - the surgeries, the failed relationships - think about that dinner scene in
. She looks beautiful, no doubt, but extremely sanitized for the role.
Palash has potential. For a debut opposite an established actress like Subhashree, he manages to hold his own and even shines in certain scenes.
Shillong, as the location for the plot to unfold, was indeed a bold choice. The camera flits between the busy town and the serene outskirts of the rainy setting. We get the 'Megh' bit here. But sadly, it's a lot of 'Megh' and very little of 'Roddur'. The director adds a twist to the tale by portraying the political unrest in the North East, weaving the strife into the lives of the protagonists. Yet, that's too little sunshine to make a rip-off such as this look spotless.