Court (2014)

Court review.

My Ratings: 4.3/5.

Debutant writer/directer Chaitanya Tamhane‘s film Court recently won the National Award (Golden Lotus Award) in the Best Feature Film category. 

court-posterThe film and it’s director have also won numerous prestigious awards in various national/international film festivals – thanks to producer Vivek Gomber for his belief in uncompromising, intelligent cinema.

Yes, Court is no doubt an astutely sarcastic take on our country’s judicial system. 

A script so uniquely underplayed and yet so effective to it’s purpose – something very rare in Indian cinema.

A court-room drama that revolves around folk-singer Narayan Kamble’s (Vira Sathidar) prosecution, he being accused of singing songs that provoked a sewage worker into committing suicide! Abetment of suicide in judicial terms.

Court-poster1Geetanjali Kulkarni the public prosecutor, Vivek Gomber the defense lawyer, Pradeep Joshi the judge and a few other supporting characters – perfect casting and brilliant performances.

But what really makes the film Court outstanding (apart from the script) is the way it’s been shot.

Intelligent establishing shots, long takes of day-to-day events, numerous reaction shots of people and detailed production design – all these make the film so real that it adds a certain voyeuristic quality to it. Honestly at times it felt like i was actually sitting in the same court room where the aged folk-singer is on trial.

Court-poster3Very believable characters with glimpses of his/her personal lives (shown just enough to give an essence of that character).

And a special mention of the superbly sarcastic ending where the film cleverly conveys the message that no matter how much noise you make, it’s impossible to wake up the judicial system of India.    

A marathi film (story and characters all based in Maharashtra) but Court is also multilingual – characters speak Marathi, English, Gujarati and Hindi.

116 min of thought provoking cinema with a documentary type realism – very much recommended.



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