Onto the last release of a rather long Saturday where as promised, I am stretching myself and trying to cover as much content as possible in this mega blockbuster of a weekend. And I have just finished watching Natkhat on Voot Select. This was one short that I have been waiting to watch since last year. It had initially premiered as a part of “We Are One” film festival on Youtube. Sadly I missed the film then and since then the wait had continued. Until today when I finally got a chance to view it, is it worth your time, stay tuned.
Story & Screenplay
Natkhat follows the story of a home bound mother who teaches her young son some important lessons in gender equality through a bedtime story. The story is powerful and deserves to be watched by all young parents. Infact this film was an eye opener for me for how deep rooted patriarchy is prevalent in our society, so much so that it starts impacting kids too. The screenplay is equally powerful. What starts off as a shocker(featuring kids) soon acts as a mirror to the society before throwing in a lesson or two about educating your sons right from a very young age. Just a small rant before I proceed, the society that we live in often accuses females for wearing short dresses and discouraging them from venturing late into the night, whereas a boy can do whatever he wishes and if he does something against the girl’s wishes then it is definitely the girls fault! That is the double standards that you and me both are part of. And this needs to change. I remember my mother educating me at a very young age, this is the need of the hour for all parents. The screenplay is poignant and thought provoking without getting too preachy.
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are thought-provoking and really impactful. The use of BGM is refreshing, a subtle note change for every mood change that takes place. Director Shaan Vyas keeps things straight and simple without being over dramatic. And this has a loud and lasting impact at the end of the film! Distinction marks to the direction!
The performances are excellent. Sanika Patel as Sonu looks so innocent and is such a natural onscreen. The shift of moods in his character is so effortlessly done by him. And this is yet another Vidya Balan show! As Sony’s mother she is wonderfully restrained and the pain that she shows through her eyes is beautiful to watch which soon transforms to hope. An absolute pleasure watching her onscreen.
Natkhat is Thought-Provoking, Hard-Hitting and subtely poignant. Perhaps the best short film of 2021. Available on Voot Select and Highly Highly Highly Recommended.