Tumbbad Movie Review Rating: 3.5/5 Stars (Three and half stars)
Star Cast: Sohum Shah, Anita Date, Ronjini Chakraborty, Mohd Samad, Jyoti Malshe
Director/s: Rahi Anil Barve, Anand Gandhi, Adesh Prasad
What’s Good: Pankaj Kumar’s cinematography creates an atmosphere that will spook you out but still make you stick to your seat to narrate an intriguing tale, Jesper Kyd’s background score which adds to cinematic brilliance
What’s Bad: A strange thing about mystery is, it’s only intriguing until it’s not known! In the first half, makers put out way too much about the beast & hence the interest starts to slip
Loo Break: If you’re scared of horror, you’ll have to take one naturally but as far as the film is concerned you shouldn’t break the link
Watch or Not?: This isn’t your usual Bollywood horror flick, this has a story! Watch it for its thrilling moments & a very dark yet satisfying tone
Tumbbad, a remote village situated in Konkan, Maharashtra is cursed! The story starts with explaining the evolution of the Goddess of Prosperity and the love for her first child – Hastar. Giving birth to 16 crore gods and goddesses, the Goddess of Prosperity was partial towards her first child. Hastar wanted to obtain all the unlimited gold and food possessed by the goddess. He gets all the gold but was attacked when was trying to go for food. Before getting destroyed, the Goddess of Prosperity saves him and keeps him safe in her womb but on a condition that he will never be worshiped by anyone and should be forgotten.Ages later, in the city of Tumbbad, people make a shrine of honor of Hastar and that’s when it get cursed. In 1918, a family of two brothers Vinayak and Sadashiv reside in Tumbbad along with their mother. Mother is a mistress to the Sarkar of the village who’s almost on his deathbed. Vinayak and Sada are the illegitimate children of Sarkar and his mistress. Sarkar’s mother (Jyoti Malshe) is a creepily looking old lady who has refused to die. Tied with chains she has to be fed daily without fail in order to keep her in that room. After the death of Sarkar, Vinayak and his mother leave Tumbbad for good. But years later, Vinayak (Sohum Shah) come back in order to get back the golden treasure which was obtained by Hastar ages ago. With the help of Sarkar’s mother he gets to the treasure but there’s a catch which moulds the remaining story.
Story, screenplay and dialogues are a combined effort by Mitesh Shah, Adesh Prasad, Rahi Anil Barve and Anand Gandhi. First draft of the story was written in 1997 and since then it has been a mysterious journey for the film. If you’re a fan of horror films you will be scared. If you’re a fan of good panchatantra-esque stories you will listen to it carefully. If you love good storytelling than you will be hooked. If you love the contrast of light and dark you will love the setup of the movie.Screenplay is where the issue hides! In order to give it a festival touch, our four musketeers try and complicate things a bit too much in between. Also, because the mystery starts unraveling in the second half, interest starts slipping down the slope. It’s unfair to ask much from the people who have worked since years on a single script, but few little modifications might’ve worked in the favour of the film. Modifications such as simplifying the complexities, adding a bit more to the mystery and an unforgettable finale.
Sohum Shah delivers a haunting performance as Vinayak. The greed is visible through his expressions & that’s a great feat to achieve when you’ve such a role to play. He’s wicked but at the same time displays the emotions that one can totally relate with. The actress playing Vinayak’s mother is amazing in her little role.
Anita Date (Vinayak’s wife) delivers a fine performance too. Ronjini Chakraborty (Vinayak’s mistress) is a natural, Mohd Samad (Vinayak’s son) is a star of the second half, Jyoti Malshe (Vinayak’s grandmother) as the creepy old woman will haunt your dreams for a long time.
Rahi Anil Barve is the mastermind behind the story of Tumbbad which is inspired by Shripad Narayan Pendse’s Marathi novel Tumbadche Khot. But Anand Gandhi and Adesh Prasad stepped in later to rework on the already shot film. As said before, it’s the story and screenplay that required some brushing; there are no major complaints with the direction.
As far as songs are concerned, it’s just a single title song composed by Ajay-Atul and sung by Atul Gogavale. It’s played at the various junctures in the film and is effective every single time. Jesper Kyd’s background score is one of the best to come out of a Bollywood film.
Movie Review: The Last Word
All said and done, Tumbbad is one magnificent looking film. A dark fusion of horror, fantasy, drama and thriller – the story of Tumbbad is surely to haunt your thoughts even after you leave the cinema hall. A treat for the lovers of this genre.
Three and a half stars!
Tumbbad Movie releases on 12th October, 2018.
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