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Sonchiriya (Hindi Movie)
Film: Sonchiriya

Cast: Sushant Singh Rajput, Bhumi Pednekar, Manoj Bajpayee, Ashutosh Rana, Ranvir Shorey

Direction: Abhishek Chaubey

Written by: Abhishek Chaubey and Sudip Sharma

Genre: Crime, Action, Drama

Duration: 2 hrs 26 minutes

Language: Hindi (A)

Critic’s Rating: 3/5


Set in the Chambal Valley during 1975, the story revolves around a gang of dacoits led by Maan Singh (Manoj Bajpayee). Lakhna (Sushant Singh Rajput) is the closest and most dependable member of his gang while Vakil Singh (Ranvir Shorey) is his ally. Policeman Virender Gujjar (Ashutosh Rana) is on their trail and has a personal vendetta against them.


At first, you may think it is Bollywood's obsession with daakus (dacoits) that has paved the way for this gritty film. However, minutes into this movie and you will realise that Abhishek Chaubey (from the Vishal Bhardwaj school of filmmaking) delves deeper. He is the sort of filmmaker, who essentially captures the soul of his protagonists. Be it someone like Tommy (Shahid Kapoor in Udta Punjab, 2016) or a bunch of dacoits as shown in this film, Chaubey always scratches the surface.

For the confused bunch, whose knowledge of daakus is limited to Gabbar Singh (Amjad Khan) and Samba (Macmohan) from Sholay (1975), the sort who loot villagers and watch 'Mehbooba Mehbooba' in their free time, this film may seem like an aberration. Here, the portrayal of the inhabitants of Chambal will come as a rude shock. Sample this: one dacoit's only desire is to eat a mutton-thali. After he has eaten a satisfying meal, he lies below the stars and utters something like – “everyone glamorises our lives. But we walk 30 miles at a stretch, sometimes without a morsel of food, we don't have a place to take a dump in and we don't know whose bullet will bite into us. Prison life may be better than this.”

In other words, the last of the Chambal population is out in the ravines looking for salvation. But despite their attempts at retribution, almost all of them are resigned to their fate. They know they have lived by the bullet and will die by it.

The film carries a subliminal lesson that can apply as much to the dacoit as it can to us. Yes, Karma, it says, is a 'b***h' and it will bite you.

The writing by Chaubey and Sharma has as much bite as the bullets sprayed here. The attempts to tear into the soul of the dacoits and show them as real people with fears, faith and fervour, comes across effectively. The performances are super-efficient. Be it Manoj, Sushant, Ranvir or Bhumi, each of them blends into the character effortlessly. But the pace of the film is slow and you need to be very patient at times.

Also, the Bundelkhandi dialect introduced to add authenticity to proceedings is hard to grasp unless you are the sort who likes reading subtitles (like I do). Cinematographer Anuj Rakesh Dhawan has captured the barren ravines with love!


It's unlikely that those in the cities will identify with this offering. But yes, if you're a curious cinema fiend, Sonchiriya will entice you.

Source: dnaindia.com

sonchiraiya || official trailer teaser || sushant singh rajput || bhumi pednekar | balaji films2018