There are films that are made with the intention to entertain the mass. Then there are some that interest and intrigue you. And finally, there is this rarest of the rare kind of film too that will leave you disturbed at the end. And Haraamkhor falls in this third category!
Needless to say, it is made keeping in mind a very niche audience. The film has a very basic look and feel. The shots look like those made with a handy cam. Shot almost three years back, it was stuck because it could not get a certification from the censor board. That it is releasing with a U/A certificate is what amazes me. Please do not let the trailer fool you. This is not a love triangle that involves a married man and two students. Nope, not at all! This is much more dark and complex, so much so that it left me speechless and disturbed for a long time after the film was over.
The film was supposed to introduce Shweta Tripathi. Thanks to the delay, we already know how credible an actress she is. I wondered why director/writer Shlok Sharma would cast her as a 15 year old. Well the answer lies in the film itself. Given a particular scene that appeared just before the interval, it is but natural that only a woman of Tripathi's age, understanding and maturity would be able to do it.
There are two unexpected stellar performance here- that of Mohammad Samad and Irfan Khan, the two kiddos who you will see even in the trailer. They are brilliant. Never even once does their acting seem making too much of efforts. They are spontaneous, brilliant and natural. Mohd Samad especially shows so many emotions with such ease that he will leave you awe-struck.
The performances in the movie are overall brilliant. Every actor put their best foot forward. And we already know how good an actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui is. With a commercially big movie lined up for release next week itself, this is one that puts Nawaz on a high pedestal in terms of acting by giving him the scope to give his best shots!
Coming to the story, it shows a disturbing relationship between a student and a teacher. Shweta plays a 15 year old Sandhya, who had been abandoned by her mother at a very young age and whose father is never able to spend much time with her because of the nature of his job. She seeks comfort, security and asylum. She gets a kind of this feeling from her teacher Shyam, who simply takes advantage!
The story reveals the underlying hypocrisy and the so called superficial honour people keep within themselves. It is a jarring commentary on the complexities that look fairly simple from the outside. While the story is great, the narration mars it a lot! I loved how the innocence of Kamal, who loves Sandhya plays in between the scenes of Sandhya and Shyam. This only heightened the contrast. That music of innocence became pretty unbearable after the disturbing episodes! But then, for quite some time in the first half, I had no idea what is going on. There could have been better editing in the film all throughout. But what seems to be most disappointing is how the movie is brought to an end. No Mr. Sharma, you could have done it a lot better. And we hope and it gets better with time.
This flick is definitely for a niche audience. Go watch this film if you love cinema in general. Do not even attempt to see this if you are looking for some entertainment!