Toilet: Ek Prem Katha
Toilet: Ek Prem Katha- A stinky affair!
Movie Review by Anand Kumar Jha (Rocheston Certified Movie Critic)
Toilet: Ek Prem Katha is a movie based on a true story that took place in Madhya Pradesh a few years ago and managed to capture much interest. The movie is undeniably meant to bring awareness about Swachh Bharat Abhiyan but the half -hearted attempt by director Shree Narayan Singh fails to pack a punch. The story is centred around Keshav (Akshay Kumar),a 36-year-old semi-literate man residing in a small town, who takes care of a bicycle shop. His father Pandit Ji (Sudhir Pandey) is shown to be a man staunch believer in religion. To the extent, Keshav is seen being married off to a buffalo to reduce the effect of the fault in his stars upon his father’s insistence. But, Keshav is smitten by Jaya Joshi (Bhoomi Pednekar), who is well educated and follows her everywhere. He even manages to woo her.
But all hell breaks loose when she discovers that Keshav’s house does not have lavatory. She disagrees to join the ‘lota party’, which consists of other women defecating in public. She demands construction of toilet at her in-law’s house immediately and soon gets into with her conservative father-in-law over several other issues. The film has a clear motive to spread a social message but fails to entertain completely. It is imperative for a commercial film to educate and entertain simultaneously
Talking about performances Akshay Kumar’s Keshav is not well-etched, lacks depth and has been given high-handed dialogues, which fall flat. It is Bhoomi Pednekar who makes the film bearable with her restrained performance and great acting skills. Actor Divyendu Sharma, known for his performances in Pyar ka Punchnama and Chashme Badoor, plays Akshay’s younger brother. He is wasted in the role with hardly any dialogues ascribed to him. Even a class-actor like Anupam Kher (in a cameo) hardly gets to do much except show his love for Sunny Leone. However, Sudhir Pandey as Pandit Ji gives a stirring performance and makes you develop a strong hatred towards his character, which is not easy to achieve. A special mention to character actor, Rajesh Sharma who manages to show his acting prowess in a small role as government official Mathur. He provides the much-needed direction to the movie, which actually starts to ‘stink’ mid-way due to its dull screenplay. The movie screams of being a marketing film for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and a mouthpiece of BJP’s favourite campaign.
The biggest turn-off are the dialogues, that are complete misfits in the semi-urban setting. The lousy attempts at jugaad as solutions to the toilet problem are again futile attempts to prolong the movie. While the film has solid potential and great concept at heart, the director fails to create the magic onscreen. The music and background score of the film makes it a bit more tolerable. Go if you must for Toilet-Ek Prem Katha, but you will come out disappointed.