AEVDHE SE AABHAAL
A Remarkable Contemporary Thought-Provoking Marathi Film with a most relevant message.
[ Reviewed by VIKRAM KARVE ]
Divorce is no longer an ugly word. It’s happening all around us. Rising expectations, coupled with diminishing tolerance levels, are taking their toll, even in the middle-class milieu of “conservative” towns and cities like Pune. Everyone wants a “perfect” relationship and “ideal” marriage, but they want it on their own terms. The modern mantra seems to be that if a relationship is not working it is better to sever it, split up, rather than endure and make efforts to patch up.
There are many stakeholders in a marriage, and divorce; the main ones being the husband, the wife, and the children. Aevdhe Se Aabhaal vividly portrays the repercussions of divorce on children, innocent victims who suffer for no fault of theirs.
Ten year old Bunty [played brilliantly by Rutvik Nadkarni] lives in Pune with his mother [Pratiksha Lonkar], a bank manager, separated from her husband [Ashok Shinde] who works in Mumbai. Bunty loves both his parents and looks forward to spending “quality time” with his father during his monthly visits. Now why the parents have split is a mystery as relationships seem quite cordial and amicable. [In my opinion “Amicable Divorce” is a most inexplicable oxymoron – if you can amicably divorce, why not amicably stay together? I thought only estranged marriages break up, and just can’t comprehend this mumbo jumbo about remaining good friends after the divorce when it’s much better to be good friends within the marriage! ]
Post-separation, things start happening quite conveniently. A relationship is slowly developing between Bunty’s mother and the Good Samaritan widower neighbourhood doctor [Harsh Chhaya] in Pune, while something similar is brewing between Bunty’s father and his Bengali friend Shibani [Shibani Sengupta] in Mumbai. So Bunty’s parents divorce each other with mutual consent and remarry, and bask in happiness with their newfound loves, leaving Bunty psychologically confused and emotionally devastated. His mother gets a new husband, his father gets a new wife, and the hapless Bunty is left high and dry.
It is at this juncture that the movie truly takes off with a sensitive and realistic depiction of Bunty’s losing struggle to come to terms with harsh reality. There are no vamps and villains in this story. The bewildered Bunty just can’t cope up with the circumstances as they snowball beyond his control.
The brilliant perceptive direction by Bipin Nadkarni who inspires natural virtuoso performances from the gifted actors creates a powerful and engrossing film which leaves a lasting impact on the audience.
Aevdhe Se Aabhaal is a remarkable contemporary thought-provoking Marathi film with a most relevant message and deserves a much wider viewership. I wish they dub it in English, Hindi and other languages and release it all over, or maybe screen it on TV.