Thursday, October 25, 2012

Soongava:Dance of the Orchids (2012) SAIFF 2012

Diya, young woman who wishes to become a dancer enters into an arranged marriage. As she spirals closer to her wedding day she realizes that she has no feelings for her betrothed but  is in love with her best friend, Kiran. They begin an affair but soon are found out...

The pleasures of this film come entirely from the relationship between the two women. When the pair get caught in the rain about a quarter of the way into the film and they end up crashing into each other, the film finally gains traction it really didn't have up to that point. There is something about seeing the pair interact that is truly special. The magic of the film carries over into several moments where music is used to convey the emotions between the women such as a song that is heard when Diya is out with her fiance and Kiran is at her friend's home talking to her parents. The music bridges their distance wonderfully.

The problem is that outside of the relationship of the two women- which would be great in a film from anywhere- the film is saddled with your typical scenes of parents trying to keep their girl on the straight and narrow and the typical complications of a disapproving society. The scenes are so cliche as to be almost stilted.  It's not the performances, it's the script which literally gives the actors nothing to do but say the very expected things.The film might have been able to over come the cliche-ness if this had been filmed a bit more imaginatively than it is. The film kind of suffers from a sense of it being shot for TV.

Please don't let me infer that Soongava is a bad movie, it's not but instead of making a great film from top to bottom the film settles for making a statement with the result the film is just good despite some truly very real moments. Forgive me but I hate it when a film's biggest selling point is that it has it's heart in the right place and it's full of good intentions. Soongava certainly has it's heart in the right place, I just wish it had things other than the few scenes between the women to make the film truly special.

The film plays Sunday the 28th at 5pm. For more information click here.

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