Mithya: A Bitter Sweet Symphony

poster.jpgThe rebellious trio, Rajat Kapoor, Vinay Pathak and Ranvir Shorey are back with Mithya. The tlae of the film industry (as was in Bheja Fry) still remains the backdrop of the next directorial venture from Rajat Kapoor.

The remainders of ‘Bheja Fry’ are left far behind, with the film being a rib tickling hilarious comedy. This film, on the other hand, has shades of dark humor sprinkled with a little thrill and some drama.

Mithya, unlike ‘Bheja Fry’ is not just a comedy – instead it reminded me of a show called “Weeds”(airing on Showtime, not available in India) which is a “dramedy” of sorts! Mithya is the first movie I have watched which fits into that category perfectly.

The protagonist, this time around, is VK Agarwal (Ranvir Shorey), a struggling actor trying to get a foot hold in the industry. He has been a theater actor for eons and wants to break his mould by doing films. VK continuously struggles to get meatier roles and tries to get his “break through film” by pleasing his producers and casting agents. The opening montage shows VK doing the role of an extra that dies in the first scene of the movie. Later, he even tries to bill the producers for non-existent drivers and makeup men!

VK is shown trying and failing miserably, from doing almost non-existent roles to voicing pathetic indigenous animations. His talent going waste is very hilariously portrayed in a scene where he enacts Hamlet with a bed sheet as a cloak, and loudly abusing neighbours for an audience screaming at him to stop. VK hasn’t exactly been destiny’s favorite child and in his heart knows that his unrealistic ambitions are crumbling each day slowly!

VK might be a talented actor but we are saddened when his life goes from one unsuccessful day to the other, he lives the life of a person who pushes past every night with a nightly quarter of whiskey, his desperation is nonchalantly shown when he asks for the brand with the free glass. VK enjoys his drink with every lonely man’s companion- the sea! He wishes his life would change and the wish comes true and how?

One of his introspective night drinks is interrupted by a volley of bullets between two rival gangs – Shetty and Rajye. Shetty’s gang includes two dirty cops’ ironically named Ram (Vinay Pathak) and his comrade, the very hilarious Shyam (Brijendra Kala), Gawde (Nasserudin Shah) and the Kingpin- Shetty (Saurabh Shukla).

The twist – VK unfortunately bears an uncanny resemblance to Rajye bhai, an infamous don! Seduced by the promise of a crore rupees and Gawde’s girl friend Sonam (Neha Dhupia), VK is persuaded to replace Rajye Bhai to bring down the gang from the inside.

The story maps VK’s misadventures in a crime family. He grunts his way around the real Rajye’s short tempered brother Manu (Harsh Chayya playing a character with stark similarities to Sunny Corleone), his wife and his cronies; he tries to pull of being Rajye in every aspect of his personality!

Rajat Kapoor has made a few bold choices in his casting and has pulled it off brilliantly! Casting Nasserudin Shah as a second fiddle needed a lot of guts, but the role of Gawde could not have been done by any one else better. The surprise packages in the film are Neha Dhupia and Brijendra Kala! Kala steals the show; his hilarious screen presence stuns the audience. His extraordinary comic timing, and astute reactions to dialogues thrown his way, is impeccable.

Neha Dhupia has shown skill in portraying her role as a seductress and a woman with a heart of gold; she has slipped into the skin of the character with great aplomb. Vinay Pathak sadly has a “blink and you miss me” part to play. The background score is simple and eerie at times, but the star of the show is not the actors or the music but the screenplay and the narration. Flirting with experimental cinema, Rajat Kapoor has pulled of another very successful directorial venture.

This motion picture left many stunned, and a lot of viewers leaving the hall felt a little confused and disoriented. This cinematic experience is for those who appreciate film making as an art, and not only as a form of entertainment. A must watch for all those who enjoy intelligent cinema!

Patanjali Pahwa

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