Bhardwaj does again what he is good at, delivering another good story. Pataakha is a solid piece, and he knows how to craft his story. He has again and again proved his skills, and again you can definitely say he is the master of telling stories.
The characters in the movie are inherently flawed and you see the story growing with it. Though his last Rangoon, juggled with the characters and plot, and fell flat
Pataakha is different. The characters here take the center stage and thr them story keeps on moving forward. He used the mataphor of telling a beautifully set theme with the logic of that world, giving us the India-Pakistan analogy.
Vishal Bhardwaj uses up small moments to capture the essence of the characters and their motivations.
The actors did a wonderful job and with Bharadwaj’s touch, they outshined. It's not just the sisters at war, you will see the actors living the story.
The ambition of the sisters, what they want and their will to achieve something. Vishal Bhardwaj has this odd fascination of 2 characters fighting each other in mud, making it look grimy, sloppy and dirty. The same tones you saw on 7 KhoonMaaf, or the recently released Rangoon. He uses the tones and such scenes to his strength staging 2 people fighting sequences to the brilliant effect.
Radhika Madan and Sanya Malhotra played the leads, the elder and the younger sister respectively. Both did a great job and made a meal out of their roles. The father was played none other than Vijay Raaz, did a fantastic job.
You can see that man trying and is tired, has droopy shoulders and look of exhaustion is quite evident on his face. Coming to the next talented actor Sunil Grover, he is playing a contemporary version of the mythological Narad in the story. He cracks jokes, makes fun and effectively brings in the charm and energy to the narrative.
Just like his other films, Bhardwaj keeps the music to the background. This helped him serving the purpose of his narrative.
The screenplay is well written, and the dialogues are brilliant, may not be as great as his previous works, but at parts which you will understand how well they have been done. The writing is very organic and it flows throughout the movie with the characters making decisions without thinking any of the consequences and how they then try to pull themselves out.
Pataakha had a very important element, which was the surrealism thematically. Thr India-Pakistan metaphor showed how difficult it was for the sisters to stay separately. It was showed in the light of them suffering the consequences and in return they experience the push they have for each other.
The movie has been shot very well, and the cinematography is particular set was in a different tone compared to the other films of Vishal. You see a lot of hand held moments, multi camera work with several cuts. The narrative is engaging because of the intercutting editing and cinematography.
Pataakha is undoubtedly one of the best releases this year. The theme is different and you have to understand the design to get into the world of Pataakha.