Vichar Karayala Lavnara Pravas
Highway Ek Selfie Aarpaar….!
Cast: Girish Kulkarni, Renuka Shahane, Huma Qureshi, Tisca Chopra, Mukta Barve, Shrikant Yadav
Director: Umesh Kulkarni
Duration: 2 hours 18 minutes
Marathi audience are watching new age Marathi cinema for the sheer experimentation the new age directors and writers are doing. The road less travelled in the mainstream cinema as most of the movies are either masala flicks or too much of fantasy. Highway is the movie with simple storyline. The journey of different set of people travelling along the highway bound by human emotions. It makes you laugh, cry, think and understand the real meaning of life.
There are no heroes or villains in this film. The character’s emotions are the hero and villain both. The best part is, the story is open ended and makes the audience think rather than spoon feeding the emotional imbalance. A lot of philosophy can be found in the simple, yet interesting storyline.
I am not going to reveal the story in detail as it is best to watch it unfold in theatres. The first half is fast, as it introduces 9 set of people travelling from Mumbai to Pune for their own reasons along the Highway. You start feeling that you have seen such characters during you travels as well. You start understanding the reason each set of people are travelling to Pune. The dilemma, fights, fun are intriguing as you laugh a lot in the fast paced 1st half. The fast paced travel on the highway only suggests why the characters do not think while speaking or acting the way they are doing.
The real emotional introspection starts in the 2nd half, true to its tagline (Ek Selfie Aarpaar…!). The second half is exactly opposite of the first half, slow in pace. It starts to unfold the true emotional journey of the characters, when the travel come to a standstill. Every frame hereafter shows the silence, fear, lust, fight, responsibility and realisation of the characters.
The 9 set of characters are not at all inter-connected but are bound by human emotions expressed or unexpressed.
Umesh Kulkarni has not compromised on the actors even though they are playing a very small role. Each and every actor play their part perfectly and effectively. Special mention goes to Girish Kulkarni, the way he has portrayed the NRI, working at the CERN project. Mukta Barve is the BAAP as she portrays the bar dancer. Renuka Shahane, Huma, Tisca, Shrikant Yadav, Kishore Kadam, Sunil Barve and Vrushali Kulkarni are all natural. I will give the award for the ensemble cast of this movie for their sheer acting talent.
With the open ended story-line, the movie has to have the best technical aspects to move it forward. Editing is sharp and does not leave any impression that there are 9 stories running parallel. Camerawork is crisp and gives lots of details on and off the road. Hand-held camera work give realism to the subject of journey. Few scenes to mention are with crows, dog running behind vehicles, hens and background details.
Background score and sound add element of realism. Few things to mention, the sound of wheels when travelling on a bridge, wind sound, external traffic and honking.
The only drawback of this movie is that it cannot be understood by every person in one watch. Highway is the movie which makes you think about our emotional built-up and what is important in life. When life is fast paced, you forgot about you actions. But when it comes to a standstill, it gives you opportunity to introspect and change your decisions for the betterment of yourself and people who matter the most. I will strongly recommend to watch it twice, to understand the meaning and message the movie gives silently.
Rating: 4.5 / 5