Trailer of a film can be really deceptive. So beware! Devi, directed by Rick Basu is a glaring example of that deception. Inspired by the age old classic of Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay's cult novel Devdas, Devi is the role reversal and set in the contemporary time.
The story tries to deconstruct the theme and the gender roles are reversed. The catch line of the film is: What if Devdas be a woman. A brilliant endeavour at least theoretically, we expected a coming of the edge, subversive, postmodern film in Bengali, following the neo noir Hindi version from the Indie God Anurag Kashyap and alas! What a tragedy. Debutante director Rick Basu is no Anurag and Devi is not even close to Dev-D.
For creating a landmark out of a classic novel and film (Devdas has been made/remade at least 17 times in various languages) one needs vision and the script severely lacks that so much so that even a gifted actress like Paoli Dam looked wary, eccentric and at times hilarious instead of tragic. Being subversive is cool, provided subversion also has a strong ideology, the Director has just missed the point, therefore all his ambition went topsy turvey and the audience is not even entertained properly.
Devi(Paoli Dam) is supposedly an ace documentary maker with her own high fly ambition for which she leaves her childhood love Prateek(Subha Mukherjee)for higher studies in the USA. Prateek sulks and could not get over her, eventually marries(Rachael White) and settles down. That unsettles Devi, she escapes to Pattaya for work and fumes, indulge in narcotics, casual sex and what not!
There she meets Chandan aka Charlie (Shataf Figar) a gigolo and starts having a good time. Chandan is a ray of hope in her otherwise grumpy life. Accidentally they got involved with the underworld and Charlie is murdered. Lost in pain and anguish, before getting caught by law for indulging in drugs, Devi could not sustain and kills herself.
The narrative is superficial and hollow and no character is properly built and draws sympathy. The film, in one word, is a torture and deserves brick backs. The music is awful, so is the camera. You won't be missing out on this if you don't go and watch it.
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