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Sonali Cable: Cheenti Haathi Bang Bang

Posted on the 19 October 2014 by Haricharanpudipeddi @pudiharicharan

Movie: Sonali Cable

Director: Charudutt Acharya 

Cast: Ali Fazal, Rhea Chakroborty, Raghav Juyal, Anupam Kher, Smita Jaykar

Rating: ***

The line ‘don’t underestimate the power of a common man’ should have made its debut in Sonali Cable instead of Chennai Express. We can’t go to the film with our bars set high. This is another thinly ambitious effort that elevates an underdog in front of another big dog, with the dogs being the obvious symbols here. Instead of this comparison, the maker pushes this as a battle between an ant and an elephant. We don’t quite mind that either. The film’s littler aims never go above our head. Is that a blessing? Supposedly, yes. With all its predictability intact, Sonali Cable is neatly packaged, not overselling its capacity by means and relying on that ‘goodwill’ factor to do the goods.

In a film, where a small-time entrepreneur, running an Internet-cable after her name, takes on a corporate biggie, the romance is between a 10th-pass girl and an overseas MBA graduate. The former falls somewhere in between a typical ‘tapori’ and those cozily educated. Taking open digs at corporatization and the political mafia surrounding the same, the core empathizes with those often neglected sections of a society that integrate into a big ‘whole’. There’s almost nothing out of the box in terms of a story, but Sonali Cable has that sprinkled small-silly humor and domestic sub-plots that the lives of the lower middle-class tend to possess. The tale surrounds a girl, but the gender-focus here is not as obvious as Vidya Balan’s Bobby Jasoos.

Every home has a problem. For the rich guy, it’s an overtly status conscious mom. For the girl, it’s a drunkard dad cum social activist, neither digesting his guilt nor being able to care for his child. But, the film beyond the lead pair and the ‘quietly’ harmful antagonist, Anupam Kher belongs as much to the character Sada, whose conflict essentially drives the narrative. Even, he has an issue with his brother. He has ‘the’ moment of the film, when he purposely misspells hard-disk with a naughty touch to his mid-40’s female customer.  Meanwhile, in spite of these differences, there’s unison among their intentions to conquer their pains.

Ali Fazal, reminding us of his Bobby Jasoos days again is in a dangerously stereotypical space. He still remains the supporting hand to his love interest in this outing.  The film’s action or the so-called villainous sequences aren’t stretched beyond a point. More than the visibility of gore, Sonali Cable dedicates itself to spin a lightweight ‘good versus evil’ drama. That’s one of reasons, we don’t quite object to the underwhelming screen space of Kher. Meanwhile, isn’t Rhea another Genelia lookalike ? Nevertheless, she pulls off her act with restraint. May not be the film of the year, but Sonali Cable warms us with its grounded treatment.

Review by Srivathsan N. First published in Cinegoer.net


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