All Sins Forgiven – On Screen

Ektaa Malik, BeyondHeadlines

Its young and its fearless. Bold. Not to mention shocking at times. Yes this is the face of the Indian film industry. We smoke on screen with panache. We abuse with alacrity. We have skeletons in our closets, it is high time we maybe talked about them, if not perhaps, fully disclose them. So at times, when deviant sexual practices are shown on screen, we do not look away. When a woman disrobes herself in unfulfilled desire, we do not flinch. We embrace the new found boldness. And we kill whatever we do not like!!!

That is what Saat Khoon Maaf (Seven murders forgiven) is all about. It is about black twisted characters, and there fatal flaws. It’s about one person’s intrinsic instinct to survive and more. Susannah is Strong. She is willful. She is unabashedly sexual. And well, totally unapologetic about it. She struggles from one husband to the other with the humble belief that perhaps, this might be the one. But to her chagrin, every one of them disappoints her. She is a survivor. She believes in her own system of justice.

Kudos to Priyanka Chopra for pulling off seven different looks and stages in one character.  Even though the look changes – from the Anglo Indian girl to the head covering Muslim wife – the personality of Susannah changes, but the main thread of her innate character remains the same.

This is where Vishal Bharadwaj succeeds as a film maker. Although the narrative is episodic, it still keeps the audience hooked.  The time line was very smartly incorporated- with references from national and international events – showcasing the extensive research that Bhardwaj’s team had done.

It now proved without doubt that Vishal Bhardwaj is a master of adaptations. From Shakespeare to Ruskin Bond, he has adapted every story to a new dimension and setting, and the result is always far from jarring. Saat Khoon Maaf reflects the sheer brilliance of the Director. It’s  a master’s handiwork.

(Ektaa Malik can be reached at ektaa@beyondheadlines.com)


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