Court room drama is one of the most experimented topics in Indian Cinema lacking just behind Extra-Marital affairs. But as it is one of the characteristic approaches to anything in “Bollywood”, we see lot of shouting, clapping, punches and what not in a Court Room. It is not the case that we do not enjoy them. Right from ‘Kanoon’ to ‘Damini’ and from ‘Kyunki Mai Jhoot Nahi Bolta’ to ‘Jolly LLB’, we see lot diversities in setting up a court room experience.
The movie which is causing few raised eyebrows nowadays is “Court”. Though it is a Marathi movie, I would like to place it in the category of Indian Cinema. Characters in this movie are not essentially Marathi. This movie is so flexible that one can put the same scenario in any of the Indian territories at any time, and it still will be relevant. Yes, it won National Award and everybody suddenly got to know that this movie exists. But it is one way of getting publicity to your product. The movies which do not have enough budget to cast ‘Stars’, may have more to say than mainstream cinema.
As you would have guessed by now, ‘Court’ is not a conventional film. It does not have a one line story nor does it have a typical one. It never follows a particular lead. The movie is titled Court for a reason. It precisely depicts aspect involved in Judiciary process need not carry a baggage (of it) everywhere. Four main pillars of any court case are ‘Accused or Victim’, ‘Defense Lawyer’, ‘Public Prosecutor’ and ‘Judge’.
This film focuses on the lives of these four. To draw a story from dotted lines placed by the director, we can say that the film is about Narayan Kamble (Vira Sathidar) a folk singer cum revolutionary from a backward part of society. He is man of principles, has had his fair share of adventures and craves for more. He is accused in seemingly shallow case of abetment of suicide by the police. Why of it must be understood by the audience. His lawyer Vinay Vora (Vivek Gomber)-a wealthy Gujarati-has a soft corner for falsely accused. Then comes the Public Prosector Nutan (Geetanjali Kulkarni), middle-aged mother of two or we can say a typical working wife. And lastly Judge Sadavarte (Pradeep Joshi) is well-known for his quick decisions.
As you read this, you can experience more drama than movie actually consists. It follows a straight line amidst various other straight lines. We are shown the background of the character and how real a person can be in his private life. For instance, Defense lawyer Vora cares about the lowest in the society but cannot resist the urge to go in a high-profile Bar/Restaurant and listen to some Portuguese song while having a drink or two.
One can surely rule out this movie as an Art house film but it is not. It does not care about the ‘Art’ cinema. We do not get to see visual excellence nor cutthroat editing. It relies on the script and sticks to it. Writer-Director Chaitanya Tamhane is very clear about what he wanted to make and did justice to it. Surely, ‘Court’ does have its moments but it is much more than that. The film is to be remembered . You might not even like it as you leave your seat, but it will stay with you. Few years down the line, it will suddenly popup and you still might hate it for its slow narrative, but it is the film that will be remembered for the longest.
I will not be giving any rating to this movie. A product should be rated if it is in its final form. But movies like ‘Court’ will be constantly evolving. One will get to see the same movie from different perspective each time. Go and watch it before a Big Budget Blockbuster forces it out of theatres. You might not enjoy it as much, but you will have an experience to be remembered.