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Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review: Chilling depiction of hidden reality

Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review Rating:

Star Cast: Adah Sharma, Indira Tiwari, Vijay Krishna, Anangsha Biswas, Abhikalp Gagdekar, Raima Sen, Purnendu Bhattacharya, Subrata Dutta, Naman Nitin Jain, Nidhi Mayuri, Kishor Kadam, Shilpa Shukla, Gandhali Jain

Director: Sudipto Sen

Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review Out ( Photo Credit – Instagram )

What’s Good: Unapologetically forthright saga of what is happening in Bastar

What’s Bad: The brutality shown may unsettle some people

Loo Break: No chance!

Watch or Not?: Yes, if you want to know another harsh socio-political reality of our times

Language: Hindi

Available On: Theatrical release

Runtime: 124 Minutes

User Rating:

The story is set in Bastar district of Chhattisgarh, where Naxalism still flourishes in the lush forests, affecting tribal and economically-backward villagers who are deprived of basic human rights like schools, roads and hospitals due to a well-entrenched subversive system. The Maoists, now centred there in the country, inflict untold horrors on innocent human beings, while an unholy nexus of international dimensions including social workers, journalists, authors, educationists and others refer to our soldiers and lawmakers as oppressors of the poor!

Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review Out ( Photo Credit – Sunshine Pictures / YouTube )

Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review: Script Analysis

Such a subject needs to be a dramatized version of reality rather than a dry documentary or over-the-top action drama, and Sudipto Sen manages this tightrope with sheer passion. His first-hand knowledge of the region, of communism and his deep and passionate research into this subject can be sensed. His familiarity with Naxalism and that of co-writer Amarnath Jha ensures that there is no false note in this stinging narrative filled with unimaginable brutality.

An exemplary punishment of death for someone who dares to hoist the Indian Tricolour and craves peace in the region is shown in the way the man’s body is hacked into over 30 pieces! It is compulsory also to give (up) one male child per village family to the Red ‘cause’. A coterie of Indians and foreigners discuss funds (running into crores even in 2010 when the story is set) for the cause. A young boy takes sadistic glee while being trained to shoot and mutilate potential future targets. 76 Indian jawans are butchered and roasted alive. A man who is relentlessly fighting the anarchists is stabbed once, even after he has been shot dead, by each and every Naxal.

Along with Sen and Jha, Vipul Amrutlal Shah, producer, co-writer and creative director, leaves no stone unturned in showing how this terrible clique manages to destroys simple humanity and access to basic needs as part of their heinous plan to unfurl the Red flag in Delhi itself.

Sequences that shake you are the reference to our 76 soldiers as ’76 dogs’ and some Indian university students celebrating this massacre with a dance!

The dialogues are to the point, crisp and hard-hitting and the film also showcases the unshakeable courage of the patriotic forces, including the women CRPF officers, whose dedication and passion are exemplary.

Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review: Star Performance

Adah Sharma towers as the pregnant yet determined Neeraj Madhavan, Those familiar with her cheerful, glamorous self in her other ventures will be pleasantly ‘shocked’ to see her in this fiery avatar, freckles, modulated voice and all. Indira Tiwari as Ratna is terrific as the bereaved yet resolute Ratna, who will stop at nation until her husband’s death is avenged.

Anangsha Biswas as the inhuman Lakshmi is also a delight to watch in terms of her performance and expressions. Shilpa Shukla, as the manipulative lawyer and Raima Sen as the even-more-crooked professor get a shade routine in their negative portrayals but are effective all the same. A pat is due for the naturally cute Nidhi Mayuri as Ratna’s daughter. Naman Nitin Jain, who shot to fame with Chillar Party 13 years ago, is excellent as Ratna’s programmed son. From the rest, Vijay Kashyap as Lanka and Subrata Dutta as Milind also make a special mark in their roles.

Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review Out ( Photo Credit – Sunshine Pictures / YouTube )

Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review: Direction, Music

Sudipto Sen’s passion is visible in each and every word and frame of this film, nd he is ironically best in his conception and execution of the most brutal sequences. His intent to lay bare a social and national evil, which was also seen in his The Kerala Story, is in as much top gear as in that film.

The music is restricted to two songs, but composer Bishakjyoti and lyricist Amarnath Jha deliver a punch with the song Vande veeram, expertly rendered by Javed Ali.

Bastar: The Naxal Story Movie Review: The Last Word

Such films are as much the need of the hour as other different genres, including the commercial bonanzas that are interesting allures for people to visit movie halls before streaming happens. They not only educate but create awareness that can enlighten and guide the viewer about issues that seem distant but may well affect him and his future generations in the future, and also enhance the possibility of helping fellow Indians with whatever support can be given.

Bastar: The Naxal Story Trailer

Bastar: The Naxal Story releases on 15 March, 2024.

Share with us your experience of watching Bastar: The Naxal Story.

For more recommendations, read our Shaitaan movie review here.

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