Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Shwaas (Marathi) - A Breath

Sandeep sawant's shwaas was the official indian entry for oscars last year.And it was judged the Best feature film at the national awards.A low budget marathi movie which created lot of stir. It was the marathi movie to win a swarna kamal after 50 yrs.

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It tells the story of a small boy Parashuram and his grandfather Parule.Parashuram and his grandfather who come to the city from their home town konkan to get treatment for the kids eye problem. The doctor tells that Parashuram has eye cancer and that his eyes have to be removed. Parule refuses to acknowledge the fact first, rest of the movie is how parule and parashuram acknowledge and accept the reality.


There are 4 main characters in the movie.The grand father parule(Arun Nalavade),the kid Parashuram(Ashwin Chitale), Dr shane(Sandeep Kulkarni) and Asawari(Amruta Subhash, a pretty woman) as a medical social worker.

The movie is realistic at lot of places. Mainly when depicting the plight of how people from village have to deal with the hospital bureaucracy. How the illiterates don’t have any help at these big hospitals.CT-SCAN's and declarations forms are all alien to them and for a hospital worker, that villager is one of the thousands of people he deals everyday.I wish there were separate sections in the big hospitals to help people regarding the medical procedures.Asawari comes as a medical social worker who helps the patient but iam not sure how many people like that really exist.

Good acting by everyone. Especially the kid Ashwin Chitale.He has given a wonderful performance. He has that mischievous and expressive eyes, which are always curious to see the beauty of the world.How can someone go and tell that kid that he wont be able to see the world and that he has to accept it.He won the national award for best child artist in 2003.

Sandeep sawant, courtesy hindu

Sandeep sawanth has done a good job.But there are lot of holes in the movie and he has to improve alot.parashuram and his grand dad are from konkan and the director has captured some wonderful scenery of konkan.Interestingly a serious of konkan scenes showing varying mischiefs of the boy, which are generally shown with songs,is told with just background music.Not sure whether it was intentional or because of lack of funds to make the songs. There is a shot where the boy runs around in the beach shooing hundreds of sea gulls.Blue sea,light yellow sands, whitish gulls and a small boy with a wonderful smile, a beautiful shot.When seeing all those scenes the audience can relate what the boy is going to miss later.

The movie does not do a good vs bad theme.It shows everybody's point of view and we are made to understand both the doctor and patient's perspective nicely.The movie which is told without any big cinematics gets a little bit sentimental and cinematic at the end.The narration is plain and simple and all the characters where were good.At time i kind of had a feeling that iam watching a K.Vishwanath Movie.

The music was not that great.Most of the BGM's were total lift offs from various albums and movies.

Marathi movie industry which has to fight with the big brother bollywood, was very proud of this one.And lot of people where rooting for oscars for shwaas.Shwaa's production cost was an meager 60 lakhs.There were money collection drives for promoting this movie at the oscars.

HUNDREDS of Indian devotees have been donating money to a temple charity over the past three weeks to raise funds for a low-budget movie`s Oscar publicity campaign in the US, one of the producers said.It is part of a nationwide drive to collect about Rs15m (174,888/$334,000) - more than twice what it cost to make the film - which the producers say they need to promote India`s entry for an Oscar nomination before the shortlist is announced in January. more

I think lot of marathi people got carried away on the fact that this marathi movie which won a swarna kamal for there state after 50 yrs will make them proud at the oscars also. But shwaas was a plain movie and was far away to compete against movies like "The sea inside" and "yesterday".So it didn't make it to the final 5.

The movie could have been made as a tear jerker or into an all sensitive and soul stirring movie or a very realistic movie. But shwaas fails on all front and has ended up as a mixture of all.None the less a decent movie worth watching once.

A realistic, plain and sweet movie.

Official website

Shwaas triggers a renaissance

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