The setup, the dialogues, and the visuals don’t seem to belong to this era. That would have been alright if the characters didn’t approach modernity but unfortunately, the film seems to be stuck between the modern and the old ideas.
Netflix’s new film, Tribhanga starring Kajol tells the story of three generations of an unconventional family. It is very plain and tries to find the emotional connection throughout the film but it is unable to do so. The intentions and the plot looks good on paper but on screen, things don’t seem to come together. Tribhanga tries to capture various themes in one film but it never pauses to examines itself, in fact, it doesn’t even stop for the audience to embrace a particular theme. Maybe if the film would have been longer then it might have looked better but all the other elements of filmmaking don’t seem to help the film in any way.
First of all, I want to talk about the very last shot of the film. The camera zooms into a family portrait in which a character is seen holding a book whose cover is the same family portrait and then the camera goes on an infinite loop. Almost like you have landed in the time loop of Doctor Strange. This type of final shot was a bit popular when the loop effect was a new discovery but now it can surely cause dizziness. Remember those Windows Media Player Graphics which use to start whenever we played a song, the final shot is much similar to that sort of optical illusion. Now let’s talk about the whole film, much like the final shot the filmmaking style of this movie seems very dated. The setup, the dialogues, and the visuals don’t seem to belong to this era. That would have been alright if the characters didn’t approach modernity but unfortunately, the film seems to be stuck between the modern and the old ideas.
Anu ( Kajol) is a famous Bollywood actress who has turned into a great classical dancer. Her mother, Nayantara ( Tanvi Azmi) is a famous writer but we soon come to know that they don’t have a good relationship. Milan (Kunal Kapoor) is a big fan of Nayan’s work and is trying to write her biography. Nayan suddenly gets a brain stroke and Anu’s performance is interrupted in between and she rushes to the hospital. Milan wants to know the side of Anu but Anu keeps cursing him and declines his offer. An incident from the past haunts her and a daughter gets to know his mother from a different perspective.
Now, Nayantara was a determined writer, she left her in-law’s house so that she could continue her writing. Due to this, Anu and her brother, Robi faced a heavy embarrassment at school. In a poorly constructed sequence, we are shown that Anu’s class teacher asks her that are her parents divorced? and why does she carry the surname of her mother? Anu’s daughter Masha (Mithila Palkar) much like Sanya’s character in Shakuntala Devi, has seen the epitome of flashy feminism in her mother but she supports her mother and hides all the insults she faces because of her. In order to undo and not follow the path of her mother, she marries into a conservative family. These ideas look promising but on screen, they appear to lack depth and any sort of emotional connection.
The majority of the film is lead by Kajol but she wasn’t up to the mark. At places, she overdid her rudeness to other characters. And in places, where she needs to be emotional, she appears to be too hard on herself. Others were there for a limited time and they all performed in a mediocre manner, nobody got much space or material to shine themselves. Music work is too lousy and was very average.
Overall, Tribhanga has some interesting points for all its characters but the end result is unsatisfactory and the dated treatment it gets makes the film more skip-worthy.
Cast: Kajol Devgan, Tanvi Azmi, Mithila Palkar.
Director: Reenuka Shahane.
Verdict: Disappointing, has elements to be interesting but everything doesn’t seem to come together.