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Nishabd (2007)

 -  Drama  -  2 March 2007 (USA)
5.5
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Ratings: 5.5/10 from 1,002 users  
Reviews: 39 user | 8 critic

A man, who has been married for 27 years, falls in love with his 18-year-old daughter's friend.

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
...
Jiah
Revathy ...
Amrita
...
Shridhar
Shraddha Arya ...
Ritu
Aftab Shivdasani ...
Rishi
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Storyline

Vijay lives a wealthy lifestyle in India along with his wife, Amrita, to who he has been married to for 27 years, and a daughter, Ritu, who is now 18 years of age. The family has a vast estate, where Vijay likes to trek around indulging in his sole passion - photography. Amrita, who was an accomplished Kuchipudi dancer, she even won two gold medals, gave up her passion to look after the family. This holiday, Ritu brought along a friend, Jia, to this household. Jia, quite childish, now lives with her divorcée mom in Brisbane, Australia, resents her lifestyle, especially after her mom started living with another man. When Rita sprains her ankle, both Vijay and Jia are thrown into each other's company. Amrita notices that Vijay suddenly starts singing to himself, then bursting into uncontrollable fits of laughter. Then all of a sudden, Ritu asks Jia to leave the household, but is prevented by Vijay. Things spiral out of control when Amrita's brother, Shridhar, arrives for a short visit, ... Written by rAjOo (gunwanti@hotmail.com)

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Drama

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2 March 2007 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Amitabh Bachchan denied in an interview on 'CNN IBN TV show' that this movie is inspired by Vladimir Nabokov's novel 'Lolita'. See more »

Quotes

Jia: The truth is you are a hypocrite!
Vijay: Yeah, I'm a hypocrite. Now leave.
See more »

Connections

Remake of Lolita (1962) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not Lolita, and not bad either.
2 March 2007 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

I've been saying that I'd like to see Amitabh Bachchan in a role where he is vulnerable and confused, instead of being the wisdom figure he's been stuck in in too many roles by now, and Ram Gopal Varma has granted my wish. This movie mostly succeeds in creating complex, believable, and interesting major characters, and I'd say the overall story is a good one, even including the ending which a few of the few reviews I've read weren't satisfied with. It did not disappoint me psychologically.

I am glad someone has given AB a role like this, and hope it's the first of many. I feel sure he's happy about it himself, as I've heard him talk a bit ruefully about all the father/patriarchs he gets called to do. This is a real acting job, the creation of an individual character, with the camera almost always on his face, photographed in a naturalistic way that gives us his age, his true skin color, and his sad-eyed good looks. We also see a lot of his hands, and I think it's intentional - a constant reminder of his age, as they show it the most, especially as RGV photographs them.

It's not Lolita (so many people seem to say it is), but the 18-year-old girl Vijay, AB's 60 year old character, falls in love with is neither mature nor well put together, either.

When we first meet her, with her abundant beauty and lovely body, and her crass behavior and flauntiness, I worried that RGV was going to be trying to sell me this package of annoyances as purely lovable and "sassy." But I ended up feeling that she was very well-drawn and that he knew what he was doing: you can see her through the eyes of Vijay, whose need for something seems to be met in her youth, beauty, and liveliness - but Varma also shows her to you through the eyes of "some other adult" -- a grown woman (me, say), a man who's immune to her, etc. She is pretty and sexy-acting, has some idea of her sexual power and tries to use it, but she is also unquestionably a psychological mess, a mixed-up little girl who displays and provokes. A stroke or two of background info, not made much of, grounds a perception of somebody whose needs are all over the place.

She's come to visit from Australia. Her skimpy, sexy outfits -- shorts, tiny skirts, and the like -- are nothing that would be at all unusual in any western country during hot weather, and the Indian family she's visiting doesn't pay attention to them either. Somebody just looking at her body, as the camera often does (but not vulgarly, I'd say) might be captivated by "sex appeal," but anyone paying attention to her behavior -- for example, tickling Amitabh's foot with her own foot at the dinner table, with her friend and the mom present, or running off with the camera he is teaching her to operate, dropping it, and being petulant rather than apologetic -- anybody attending to all that sees a loose cannon.

The movie is a lot of close-ups and a lot of photography of the tea plantation where the family lives, all shot so it looks a dull green all the time. The holding of the tonality so even allows, I think, for our sustained focus on the emotional developments. Also, the story is squarely about Vijay, and he lives in a place that is like this, relatively muted.

I don't think I felt Vijay's "happiness" as much as recognizing it, and that may be a weakness of the performance. I have always found AB a great silent broadcaster of the emotions like sadness, regret, deep concern, and those gifts of his are well-used here. I liked the performance of Revathi as his wife, who conveyed calm, intelligent, mature contentment with her family and life.


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Nishabd, what a disgrace in movie making! infinityToHeaven
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