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Friday, May 7, 2010

Aparna, Konkona and Mithun ... and Titli

So while my praises for Aparna Sen and the Japanese Wife are still around, let me also take this opportunity to introduce you to one more AMAZING project of hers - well my sister Mithi introduced me to this and if you havent seen it yet....the name of the movie that I am talking about is TITLI....

Titli, meaning butterfly, and sub-headed in English as 'The First Monsoon Day) is the story of a daughter and a mother who are friends.

Cast: Aparna Sen (as Urmila)
Konkona Sen Sharma (as Titli)
Mithun Chakraborty (as film star Rohit Roy)
Dipankar De
Direction: Rituparno Ghosh

The movie begins with an amazing song by noted Bengali singer Srikanto Acharya. Shot in the dense jungles of Duar in north Bengal, the movie is a visual delight that transports us from our concrete jungles into clouds, mist and tea-plantations.

The first shot shows Titli, a 17-year-old school-going girl (we can only catch glimpses of her as her hands hold a scissor) taking cut-outs of Rohit Roy from the popular Bengali film magazine AnandaLok. The camera pans across her room and we see every available space in the room has duly been filled up with Rohit Roy cutouts. Thus we come to know of her crush on the actor. At one point in the movie she even tells her mother that one day she might even marry him. Her mother is amused to learn that her teenage daughter is so in a teenage love with a man who is much much elder to her...

Titli and her mother travel in a jeep to receive Titli's father at the airport. On the way from the breathtakingly beautiful Kurseong to Siliguri, mother and daughter share many nostalgic moments.This is also the time when the mother reveals a similar crush she had on the then popular hero Rajesh Khanna.The two women giggle like young girls at these memories.

As their jeep moves down the winding paths of the hill a man asks them for lift on the way.He happens to be a man from the film industry and begs them to arrange a place for one man in their jeep.As the occupants are soon to realise, this man for whom the unit boy is asking a lift,is none other than Titl's heartthrob Rohit Roy. As they set off again on their journey, their jeep has to stop once again, due to a technical problem and they are stranded on the way,while the driver goes to the nearby town to get supplies.

All is well till now, but at this juncture, whilst the three are stranded in the middle of the woods, something happens that changes the equations between mother and daughter. Where earlier Titli could not stay a moment without talking to her mother and telling her everything that happened to her through the day, now the two are barely talking....

Watch this movie essentially to understand the beauties of our country, whether in terms of scenic beauty or in the sensuous and lyrical way that some of the best movies in this country are made. Interspersed with poetry, music, recitations and songs, this is one movie which every Aparna Sen fan should watch..I dont even have to write a single sentence in her praise...words wont do... And not to forget, check out Mithun and Konkona...Mithun earned a nomination for this film in the category Best Supporting Actor in the National Awards...And of her best....