Masaan (2015) is a Hindi movie. Neeraj Ghaywan has directed this movie. Richa Chadha,Sanjay Mishra,Vicky Kaushal,Pankaj Tripathi are the starring of this movie. It was released in 2015. Masaan (2015) is considered one of the best Drama movie in India and around the world.
Four lives intersect along the Ganges: a low caste boy hopelessly in love, a daughter ridden with guilt of a sexual encounter ending in a tragedy, a hapless father with fading morality, and a spirited child yearning for a family, long to escape the moral constructs of a small-town.
Gone are the days when people used to flock to cinemas on hearing about a "Salman Khan will remove his shirt" scene. Gone are the days where you have a 100 people pop out of nowhere and join the actors in an impromptu dance. Gone are the days when a shower of petals across the screen would imply that people are making out. Well, at least, they should be gone. 2015 is turning out to be a breathtaking year for Hindi Cinema. First we had "Margarita, with a Straw", which, simply put, broke all stereotypes. And now we have Masaan, which makes Margarita look small. We have had a few amazingly touching and intense films in regional Indian cinema, with the likes of Ray, Kasaravalli, et al, but this is a whole new territory in Hindi Cinema. Masaan is devastatingly beautiful. Where do I even start? In the small North Indian town of Varanasi, the lives of a few ordinary people intertwine in two tales of love and loss. Right from the opening scene, we are thrown right into the tragic lives of these people, with an intensity hitherto unseen in Indian cinema, almost Scorsese like. It is so intense, that an air of discomfort fills the theater just 5 minutes from the opening. And that of unjust. Unjust, as we are forced to see the catastrophic consequences of corruption, greed, caste-ism, and people's attitudes towards sexuality. This is no pretty film. There are no scenes of comic relief. It gets into your head real quick, and you are all but mute spectators to their spiraling lives. You feel chained to your seats as you're unable to do anything for them. Now that's the power of good cinema. The acting is almost perfect. Richa Chadda, as Devi, the bold woman caught up in sexual crime and corruption, is the star of the show. She pulls off the small town girl next door role with elegance and beauty, which only increases with her fearlessness as the film progresses. All the other actors, though not as good, are extremely believable in their respective casts. The direction is impeccable, with every small shot, be it romance or crime, captured with equal ferocity. But where the film truly stands out is in its cinematography. Avinash Arun Dhaware does in incredible job in capturing the holy city of Benaras in both its highs and lows. He sure is an expert in glorifying tragedy. The shots of the cremation at the ghats, the boat rides at night, and the train on the bridge are so hauntingly beautiful that they would remain etched on to my memory for quite some time. Masaan is a film that exposes you to the kinds of lives people elsewhere live, and gives you an opportunity to evaluate yours. It makes you ponder over issues, though a tad exaggerated, that people in certain parts of our country surely still face. It might also teach you a thing or two on love, loss and moving on. Although I haven't seen a lot of Hindi cinema, this might just about be the best that I have. Unfortunately, most people would still prefer a topless Salman Khan than a gem like this.
Masaan is a story set in real Benaras which is better known as Kashi. Why did I mention real Benaras? This film makes you meet the other side of Kashi which is more active in the night than the day, the cremation Ghats where the dead bodies are burnt as per Hindu rituals. The cremation Ghats of Kashi has been mostly portrayed in films and serials as a mystic place but here the director, a débutant Neeraj Ghyawan and co-writer Varun Grover portrays the cremation Ghats as a usual business place where the bodies are burnt after dying. But, the film has a hidden treasure beyond the burning of the bodies in the cremation ghats. It's the burning of people griefs and the courage to let go their guilt to celebrate a new life. The urge of arriving in life is portrayed by each central character of the film – Richa Chadha as Devi, Sanjay Mishra as Devi's father and Vicky Kaushal as Deepak. While Devi wants to get out of the narrow mindedness of the city and attain more liberty in the form of experiencing love and pleasure, the other character Deepak wants to break his shackles of being a pyre burning lower caste youth of becoming a civil engineer and dreams of marrying his upper caster girlfriend. Sanjay Mishra runs a small shop at the cremation ghat and is trying to rejuvenate the cold relationship with his daughter and in order to protect her from a scandal; he breaches his own moral principles when he forces a child who works in his shop to take part in the dangerous game of collecting coins from the Ganges. The story brings twist in the each character's lives when they are forced to do a soul searching. Their soul searching brings dark moments in the film when you feel sad about their lives. But wait, there is light after the dawn and no grief is permanent. The films at the end leaves you with a message that Masaan is not only about burning the physical bodies but also about letting go your grief and making your soul guilt free. The film is beautifully written with a strong message and a good débutant director attempt towards the serious sensible storytelling cinema. The music by Indian Ocean gels with the characters lives and the city's backdrop. The lyrics and music of the songs 'Tu Kisi Rail si gujarti hai' based on Dushyant Kumar's poetry and Man Kasturi re' are simply magical and has lifetime music value. All credits to the Director Neeraj Ghyawan who has been trained under Anurag Kashyap and the co-writer Varun Grover for such a beautiful story. Both the seasoned and the débutant actors have worked hard on their characters and that is evident from their acting. I want to end this review for Masaan with these few lines in Hindi.. Jo Man ko Chu Jaye Use khubsurat ahsas kehte hai, Jo Atma ko Chu Jaye Use Masaan Kehte hai !
Masaan was felicitated at the Cannes Film Festival with standing ovation from the audiences. True to its hype, Masaan lives up to the reputation and gives you hard-hitting drama with realistic views on life. Masaan, means "crematorium", tells two parallel story in the holy city of Varanasi. From the writer Varun Grover( lyricist to some good films like Gangs Of Wasseypur, Ankhon Dekhi, Dumb Laga Ke Haisha) and direction by Neeraj Ghaywan ( 2nd Unit director to Gangs Of Wasseypur and Ugly), Masaan tells you the ugly side of life – The cremation scenes at the ghat of Ganges, the coin-collecting game and police extortion deep- dives into simple life and thinking of Varanasi people, caste system and police pressure. The hitting drama is hair-raising and it will be difficult to gulp down few scenes. Kudos to Neeraj Ghaywan for daring to be different. It takes nerve of steel to tell the not-so- happy ending stories. Art direction is brilliant. Cinematography is astounding with eye-catching scenes of beautiful banks of Varanasi. Dialogues are witty. Background score by Indian Ocean is tuneful. I was expecting the climax to be engaging but was slightly disappointed. Coming to the performances, Masaan has four protagonist and each of them gets into the character. Richa Chadha is brilliant and gives a staggering performance. She is undoubtedly gem of a actor playing various characters ( Nagma Khatoon in Gangs Of Wasseypur, Bholi Punjabin in Fukrey) with ease. Sanjay Mishra just gets better with each role. He is electrifying as usual. Newbie actors Vicky Kaushal and Shweta Tripathi shines and are promising. Masaan is gritty and realistic cinema which should be lauded for its sheer effort. Excellent 4/5
M A S A A N What a satisfyingly great piece of filmmaking. Super amazing performances by Shweta Tripathi, Sanjay Mishra, Richa Chadda and the newcomer Vicky Kaushal. Neeraj Ghaywan seems to be a very sorted-in-mind kind of a person to be able to make such a sublime film. The cinematography is spotlessly inspiring and to be put simply 'PERFECT'. It is difficult to believe that we have such fimmakers making such films in India with such good performances by such good actors! Shweta Tripathi is adorably cute and you just to keep looking at her. Vicky Kaushal has the 'boy-next-door' believability and he portrayed his character full of romance initially and angst later with such subtly and smoothness that from the first time you see him, you believe him. He needed some one like Shweta to complement his performance. Actually both of them have complimented each other so perfectly in the film that now I can't imagine any other actors doing their roles. Richa Chadda plays 'Devi' and her character is so interesting to watch from the very first scene. Her's is a character which cannot be described easily. She lives in a small town, belonging to a rather seemingly conservative family where there is only her father played awesome-awesome-awesome Sanjay Mishra who is a priest-scholar. Devi is an educated young woman who is exploring her sexuality when she gets caught. Rest of the film is about the way she deals this matter with her father, everyone else and herself. Their is a guilt of sorts in her mind that she needs to deal with. She loves her father but their is something in their past that bothers her perhaps. Hers is a very pragmatic character who probably feels bogged down by the small town mentality and sensibilities of the small town that she lives in. Don't want to divulge much, you have to watch the film to try to understand her character. Sanjay Mishra ji is simply put awesome. He 'acts' so effortlessly that I can't even call him an actor. Cos he just doesn't seem to be acting. He just becomes the character here. And he a delight to watch. I need to congratulate the casting director of the film for a perfect magical cast. Even actors casted for Deepak's family are perfect and each actor was realistically believable. Cinematography by Avinash Arun is just awesome. I loved the way he has lit the film. There is no extra, unnecessary lighting which gives the film a realistic look. I loved the shots which would be perhaps termed as under-lit in conventional mindsets. Cinematography was just what it was supposed to be. A great tool to visualize the director's thoughts and it did it wonderfully. Editing by Nitin Baid was spot on. There is not a single moment in film where the film lags. Its cut crisply yet there is 'thairaav' where required. Music was like cherries on the cake. Totally sweet! Totally delicious! 'Masaan' is a film that should, would inspire Indian filmmakers to do- away with all the extra glam-sham quotients of the typical Bollywood films. Films are all about story telling and this film does it perfectly. It is based in a very small town where there is nothing over-the-top in any manner. Real locations have been used and they look superb. The film is full of metaphors and it makes you think. But maybe there isn't much to think, It can be a bit of an abstract film which also works if it doesn't bore you. This film doesn't bore you! It really engages you! Definitely worth a watch! My rating: 8.5/10
Now we know how long it took for Bollywood to come up with 2015's first best film: 7 months. One should be prepared to give multiple chills to their spine as he/she goes on about watching and completing this compelling drama consisting of two parallel stories talking about life, love, and death. A young careless daughter (Chadda) of an aging professor (Mishra) from the highly conservative city of Varanasi finds herself committing a mistake while bridging the gap between love and lust, after having fallen for one of her coaching class students, which pushes the father-daughter duo into a horrible mess involving a corrupt policeman and his greedy, two-holed belly. The first five minutes of this story is enough to entice a normal person, and if you are a film fanatic, you'll throw away the popcorn for you want to concentrate. The second tale, about adolescent love, is as charming as its two main characters. The most valid setting for an interior village in the holy city is perhaps what best describes one of the protagonists here: an Engineering student (Kaushal) who is the hope of a family whose generation-old work background has everything to do with the celebrated, open crematorium (translating to masaan in Hindi) that happens in the banks of the Ganges river in Varanasi. His transition from a sincere student into a bereaving mass of wreck is triggered when a girl (Tripathi) innocently enters his life. They fall in love, and watching this love unfold is a real treat. Sweet pleasure treat. And if one feels unfinished with these stories, then there is great doses of poignancy to it. It is absolutely heartbreaking to watch the fate of these characters as they embrace dynamic equilibrium in their hopeless lives, just to move forward. The stories as a single entity reek of realism to the fact that such things still happen in this modern world where on one side of the globe people are talking about shifting to Moon or Mars. The whole idea is haunting and let us not go down the anachronism road, not that it is prevalent in the film. Cast performance is brilliant. The way they act out the well-written characters shows how the makers have paid attention to details and have done good homework about the theme. Mishra, as original as ever in his typecast character, rules the frame whenever he appears. The newcomers also add panache (wrong word, I know) to the screen, especially Tripathi. Music and lyrics are supportive, too. BOTTOM LINE: With a fantastic conclusion, Masaan is a heart- wrenching tale of people trapped in a conundrum we all call life. VERDICT: 8 stars out of 10. Highly recommended! Can be watched with a typical Indian family? YES Sex/Profanity: Mild