Thappad Movie Review: A Film that makes you question your reality.
Anubhav Sinha smashes the record of his own direction with this simple yet brilliant tale of a 'Thappad'.
Thappad Movie Story:
The film begins with the daily routine of Amrita. A very specific tightly knit routine. She wakes up, opens her front door to collect milk, picks up the newspaper, makes chai, shuts off the husband’s alarm, serves him chai as he lazily rubs his eyes, checks on the mother in law, has a quiet moment sipping from her cup of morning tea, clicks a picture from her phone as the day breaks, smiles at her neighbour, packs the husband’s lunch, runs after him as he scurries to his car, carrying his wallet, bag, tiffin and then catches her breath! This exact routine continues even after the night her husband slaps her in the heat of the moment. This routine depicts the simplicity of Amrita's life. She's not shown as a powerful or ferocious lady but a sweet family loving housewife. Her journey of self discovery has many hurdles contructed by her loved one's.
When it comes to the Cast of the film, Thappad gets five stars. Each actor gets into the skin of the character. Tapsee has proved with this film that she's here to stay. Debutant Pavail Gulati steps into Vikram’s skin and he’s a character you hate throughout for his insensitivity. He’s unapologetic about his action and he’d immediately say sorry to his boss but can’t do or even feel the same to his wife. He has given a confident performance and despite Taapsee stealing the show, it’s pleasant to see how Gulati holds his ground. Ratna Pathak Shah and Kumud Mishra as Taapsee Pannu
’s onscreen parents make you feel like your own. Both deliver fine performances; while Shah expects his daughter to understand the unbreakable bond a marriage is supposed to be, Mishra always has Amrita’s back. Then there’re Dia Mirza
and Ram Kapoor whose parts, are quite half-baked and rushed, put in there to join the dots. One character that surprises you is Nethra (Maya Sarao) as Amrita’s high profile lawyer. She essays her role very well and delivers exactly what is needed.
Anubhav Sinha needs no introduction. With films like Article 15 and Mulk, Sinha has already captured sensitive issues with great nuance. And he does the same with Thappad. With a simple narrative, he beautifully captures the journey of Amrita. He deserves extra points for not making this a film on domestic violence and just limiting it to one slap.
The dialogues are impactful and the best part is that there are no cliche monologues. At 2 hours 21 minutes, the film may seem a bit long, but the story moves at a decent pace and keeps you engaged. Despite being a writing-heavy film, it never crosses the line being over-dramatic, performances making the tough point easier for you to understand. A powerful and impactful film, Thappad makes you angry and uncomfortable, and, at the same time, it makes you question the everyday misogyny that you willingly ‘adjust to’ in real life. Director Anubhav Sinha refuses to normalise issues taken for granted in a regular setup, instead he asserts and reasserts that even if it is ‘just one slap’, why and how can a man get away with it so easily?
The film will leave you with questions like What if Vikram had apologised to Amrita for that slap on the same night? What if he slapped her inside the privacy of their home and not in front of spectators at a party? What if Amrita’s parents didn’t offer her support? What if she wasn’t self-sufficient to think of separation over a slap? But then, Anubhav Sinha's brilliant storytelling is bound to stay with you even after you leave the theatres.