The year 2013 has been a happening year for Marathi cinema. Around 90 films of diverse genres released during the year and audiences showed an increased interest at the box office. Filmmakers tried not only to work on newer subjects but also to take their films to the larger audience. Marathi films also travelled overseas and ruled at various film festivals in home and abroad.
Being the only online magazine to have reviewed most number of Marathi films in 2013, Rang Marathi selects five best films of the year; studying them on parameters of script, direction, efficiency of technical crew, performance of actors, and film’s commercial appeal.
(1) Narbachi Wadi
Narbachi Wadi, written by Guru Thakur and directed by Aditya Sarpotdar, was the best Marathi film released in 2013. This masterwork, having flawless performances from actors and excellent jobs by all departments, was truly an entertaining film. Above all, Narbachi Wadi, based on Manoj Mitra’s Bengali play Sajjano Bagan, had a very simple and sweet message for all.
Dilip Prabhawalkar and Manoj Joshi were top-class in opposite roles among brilliant performances also from Nikhil Ratnaparkhi, Kishori Shahane, Vikas Kadam, Jyoti Malshe, Amol Parchure, Kamlesh Sawant, Bhau Kadam, and Kamlakar Satpute.
Camerawork by Rahul Jadhav, make-up by Amod Doshi, art direction by Sheetal Kanvinde and Mahesh Kudalkar, costumes by Purnima Oak, and music by Mangesh Dhakde were first-rate and helped Narbachi Wadi become a masterwork.
Pitruroon, a screen adaptation of Ms Sudha Murthy’s Kannada novel, had a very touching and captivating story about love, emotions and limitations of human beings. And Nitish Bharadwaj, who turned to direction with this Marathi film, told this fascinating and heartrending story in a very simple way.
Pitruroon also marked the coming back of veteran Bollywood actress Tanuja after 33 years in an intense role of Bhagirathi. Sachin Khedekar effortlessly played two different characters while Ketki Vilas was very beautifully as the young Bhagirathi. Suhas Joshi and Om Bhutkar were also impressive in their respective roles.
The script by Nitish Bharadwaj and Pravin Tarde was very crisp and to the point. Art directors Mahesh Kudalkar and Sham Bhutkar beautifully created the story’s era and Mahesh Aane’s camera captured the same very brilliantly. Abhijeet Deshpande’s editing kept the narration very intact and intriguing.
Satish Rajwade’s Marathi film Popat was a remarkable example of how a thoughtful message can be taken to masses as well as classes in an interesting and effective manner. Contrary to boring social messages, Popat educated about a serious problem and also scared of its distressing consequences; and at the same time it made audience laugh and enjoy.
Popat, having Kolhapur’s rural life as its backdrop, had realistic dialogues, melodious music, and an impressive camerawork. Atul Kulkarni was fabulous as an accidental actor. Siddharth Menon was noticeable among the three friends as an easygoing and jugaadu guy. Amey Wagh, Ketan Pawar and Anita Date were also good. Neha Shitole was very energetic and refreshing in her role.
(4) Lagna Pahave Karun
Ajay Naik’s Lagna Pahave Karun was a lovely film, which takes you over right from the beginning and wins your heart by the time it ends. Lagna Pahave Karun attacked orthodox ways of arranging marriages but it wasn’t preachy anywhere; and that made the film beautiful and mature. It had a well-balanced and smart script by Sameer Vidwans and Kshitij Patwardhan, and equally impressive direction by Ajay Naik. A good film is always a result of good teamwork but the three things that made this film special were its heart-winning dialogues, Abhijeet Abde’s beautiful camerawork with appropriate use of lights, and Ajay Naik’s soulful music.
Umesh Kamat and Mukta Barve played lead pair with great chemistry and comfort. Siddharth Chandekar and Tejashree Pradhan were cast suitably. Swati Chitnis and Jayant Savarkar were perfect as always. Lagna Pahave Karun was a youth-oriented film, which had their own language and grammar. The film’s songs were decorated with Bollywood’s popular voices like Shankar Mahadevan, Shaan, and Kunal Ganjawala. Choreography by Phulwa Khamkar also made remarkable contribution to Lagna Pahave Karun.
Filmmaker Sanjay Jadhav’s dream project Duniyadari was 2013’s most successful Marathi film commercially. The film had love, heartbreaks and friendships – the most happening and memorable events in everyone’s life. Based on Suhas Shirvadkar’s novel and scripted by Chinmay Mandlekar, Duniyadari had youthful and melodious songs penned by Sanjay Krishnaji Patil, Sachin Pathak and Mangesh Kangane, and composed by Sameer Saptiskar, Pankaj and Amit Raj.
Swwapnil Joshi and Sai Tamhankar effectively portrayed the lead pair of this star-studded film. Urmila Kanetkar and Richa Pariyalli were natural in their respective roles. But it was Ankush Chaudhary’s Digambar Shankar Patil alias DSP, who stole the show. Producer-director Sanjay Jadhav deserves appreciation for re-inventing yaari, katta and dum for the Marathi audience. Finally, there was a Marathi film that the college-going audience could fully enjoy.