Abhay Deol has one of the most enviable filmographies for a newcomer in Bollywood, full of award winning, critically acclaimed films. Most of his films are off-beat and cater to a tiny section of the audience, which explains the fact that his films have invariably under-performed at the box office. ‘Road Movie’, is no different. The film has made it to several film festivals and is expected to win over critics in India too, but would it appeal to the commoners? Let’s find out.
The movie is about Vishnu (Abhay Deol), son of an oil trader. Absolutely uninterested in getting into the ‘oil-selling’ business, he decides to take up a road trip when he comes across an antique lorry that needs to be moved to a local museum. His journey is shared by a kid (Mohammed Faizal), a mechanic (Satish Kaushik) and a runaway gypsy woman (Tannishtha Chatterjee).
Four people from different walks of life, with different attitudes towards life, share a journey that is more exciting than the destination.
What works for Road, Movie
- Road is a fable that begs to be watched with a lot of patience. Its deftly narrated (by director Dev Benegal) and has enough in it to appeal to the hardcore movie lovers.
- Many scenes make you smile, like one of those when the old-man simply chops out one of the scenes in a film, because its too boring. The humour is never forced. It’s subtle yet funny.
- The music (composed by Michael Brook) blends beautifully into the film.
- The performances as expected are top-notch. Mohammed Faizal, the kid stands out with a fabulous performance. Followed by Satish Kaushik who is in form after a long time. Abhay Deol and Tannishtha Chatterjee do well too.
What doesn’t work for Road, Movie
- It isn’t for everyone. Infact unless you like watching documentaries or biographicals, you are better off waiting for the DVD. For example, the desert is so realistically captured that you soon tend to get bored.
- Even though the runtime is under 100 minutes, the film still seems too long.
- The romance between Abhay Deol and Tannishtha doesn’t work.
- The climax doesn’t work either. And what with Abhay returning back home as the same clueless guy, that he was before he started the journey. As a viewer it leaves you with a sense of discontent.
Overall, Road Movie is strictly for lovers of realistic cinema. It belongs to the art category (serious, non-commercial) and would fail to satisfy the entertainment seeking audience.