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Starring: Abir Chatterjee, Ananya Chatterjee, Arjun Chakraborty
Directed by Abhijit Guha and Sudeshna Roy
When a director and his young, handsome assistant with pretensions about being ‘offbeat’ filmmakers are told by a producer that he wants a film about ‘love’, they squirm. But they have no choice. In their search for the right story, however, they find some of the most remarkable love stories lurking just beneath the ordinariness of their own lives. They zero in on the tragic tale of the neighbourhood lovebirds who are fated to marry other people and lead sepa-rate, lonely lives (The title, in English, is ‘If the heart is devoid of love’).
On the face of it, the plot is not an extraordinarily unusual one for the romance genre, especially in Bengali cinema. But it is in the way that they treat this age-old love theme that the joint directors are able to introduce a newness. Though the story revolves around the two lovers, they are mere characters in the stories (and film scripts) of other characters in the film. The strength of the film is a compelling story brought to life by good acting. And generous doses of humour. But ultimately, it’s a simple story about love. First love. Lost love. Unrequited love. Unconditional love. The joy of love. The pain of love. Different faces, and phases, of the same love.