05 August, 2021

Welcome To Sajjanpur

The film never gets dull or downbeat. It never loses out on its rustic humour, courtesy some fine dialogue

Welcome To Sajjanpur
Starring: Shreyas Talpade, Amrita Rao, Divya Dutta, Ila Arun, Yashpal Sharma, Ravi Jhankal
Directed by Shyam Benegal
Rating: ***

Shyam Benegal’s Welcome to Sajjanpur is a charming little film. Watching it at Kalpana Talkies in Saharanpur, with its creaking chairs and the patties-and-cream roll interval only added to the charm for me. Watching the film in such surroundings makes you appreciate better the fact that Benegal has captured the changing spirit of mofussil north India rather well.

Sajjanpur is a village trying to break into modernity. A woman here may have started riding a scooty but will be married off to a dog as a cure for her bad stars. It has enough mobiles and might soon get a spanking new mall. On the surface, Sajjanpur looks a bit too tidy and film set-ish; you wish the frames had some life-like dirt and grime. But its people, their relationships and concerns are real. Each of them is nicely quirky, winsome and...

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