The first thing that you notice about Dur is its freshness, both in its look and its handling of the subject matter. Right from the opening credits to the doodle art/paintings on the background, the film gives out a very youthful vibe. The two main leads Udayan Duarah (Manav) and Amrita Gogoi (Pooja) play their respective roles with ease and poise. They both are natural actors and have an inherent sweetness in their personality which will make you fall in love with them at first sight. From being lovers to a constantly at tiff couple they are utterly convincing and maintain the essence of their characters till the very end. However it is the third angle in their love story, a crazy ex-lover played by Achinta Shankar, who brings in the drama with a nuanced performance. His is the only character with shades of grey. The other supporting cast comprises of veterans like Biju Phukan, Bishnu Kharghoria and Pratibha Chaudhary who lends depth to the narrative with their old age wisdom and funny banters especially those that takes place between Bjiu Phukan and Bishnu Kharghoria.
Special mentions to the cinematography by Biplab J. Doley (also the producer) which is innovative and make the familiar locations look different. The musical score by Siddharth Hazarika and Rahul Dev Nath is soulful and well fitted into the film. Also one must credit the background score of the film which heightens some ordinary scenes to impactful moments. A big shout-out to the production design and wardrobe teams who did their best to give the film a very casual and feel good ambience.
Director Kangkan Rajkhowa could have stuck to the story of a boy, a girl and an ex flame but he doesn’t and that is when film starts dragging. The second half ventures into the predictable territory as the husband and wife starts arguing over everyday domestic problems. Just when you think the film cannot recover from the unnecessary melodrama the director surprises you with a fateful but a much needed twist. What is the twist? Well you have to watch and find out.
Another problem with the film is that it deals mostly with non-issues. It’s very hard to imagine that a well educated girl of today’s time will have any problem with her boyfriend drinking beer in a bar. There are also many clichés like if a girl marries against the wish of her family then she is thrown out of the family business.
Despite its many flaws Dur has its moments which will make you smile and ponder upon life. It emphasizes on living life in the present and making the most of it because sometimes in life there are no second chances. Dur is not going to be the breakthrough movie we all are waiting for to take the Assamese film industry to the next level but it’s a step in the right direction. The team behind the film is very talented but to put it simply Dur is director Kangkan Rajkhowa’s triumph. He holds together a sensible story with music and melancholy. Go for it.
Written by David Lagachu.
A freelance cine journalist who currently writes for http://www.thecinemaholic.com/