Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Anahaat (Eternity)-Marathi -2003

Anahaat is a simple story told in a stage play style. Excellent cinematography, the beautiful sonali bendre,well decorated hampi ruins and rich costumes all add up to give a visually pleasing movie.Amol should be appreciated for bringing such richness & grandeur with minimal characters and budget. But the beautiful sonali's presence is balanced by the old Anant nag and deepthi naval who's age shows even after heavy makeup.

Anahaat tells the story of malla raja(Ananth Nag), who has gone impotent. The senate asks the Queen Sheelavathi(Sonali Bendre) to go through an ancient custom called niyog.Where she is supposed to select a male of her choice and spend the night "from sunset to sunrise" with him, to produce a heir. The queen is not consulted on this. The senate insists that she follow the age old custom and the king is bound by his duty.what happens to the queen is the rest of the story.

The story of the movie is based on Surendra Verma's play "Surya Kee Antim Kiran Se Surya Kee Pehli Kiran Tak"(From the last to the first ray of sun), which Palekar had translated into Marathi and directed in 1972.

The story of Anaahat revolves around three characters, apart from the king and queen there is Mahattarika(Depthi Naval) who is the cheif maid and a childhood friend of the king.As she is close to both the king and queen, through her we come to know the turmoil both of them go through because of the niyog.

Apart from a close study of characters, the story is also about giving choice to women and separating sex from love.This is a very bold movie and again amol palekhar should be appreciated for bringing out these kind of movies.

Cast and credits:
Sonali Bendre .... Queen Sheelavati
Anant Nag .... The King of Shravasti
Deepti Naval .... Mahattarika

Art Direction:
Nitin Desai is the art designer and he has done a lot of research to bring the richness to the movie.The movie shows the indian way of keeping track of time. They use something called ghatti-ka-patr where a vessel is placed in water and time is calculated by units of the time taken for the vessel to fully submerge into water.
The jewels used in the movie are supposedly authentic gold.

The movie has very good music.Most of the singing that happens in the movie are supposedly dhrupad.

The film was shot in 18 days in Hampi, a world heritage site near Hosbet, Karnataka. Palekar required special permission from the Archaeological Survey of India to shoot deep within the ruins of the Vijaynagar empire and also after sunset.

Amol Palekar

Anaahat (Eternity) received the Best Artistic Direction Award at the World Film Festival in Bangkok.

Anahaat home page

When Sonali forayed into the parallel cinema...with Anaahat, no one could believe that an otherwise nymphet like Sonali could come out with such a seasoned performance.I mean despite being pitted against stalwarts like Ananth Nag and Deepti Naval, she proved her mettle.
Yes, that was a surprise. she did give a good performance in this movie.
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