ASCHHE ABAR SHABOR (2018)

  • Release Date: 19/01/2018
  • Cast: Saswata Chatterjee, Subhrajeet Dutta, Gaurav Chakraborty, Indraneil Sengupta, Lolita Chatterjee, Anindya Chattopadhyay, Anjana Basu, Mir Afsar Ali
  • Director: Arindam Sil

Shabor Dasgupta (Saswata Chatterjee) comes back to solve the grisly rape and murder of two women that though feels disconnected is tied together by a common manner of killing and some shadowy motive that even Shabor cannot predict. Bijoy (Indraneil Sengupta), the man who is suspected for one of the two murders feels the right candidate for a plethora of reasons including his strange sexual conduct and fantasies. However as Shabor dwells deeper and deeper into the mystery, he can’t help but feel that there might be others too who would fit the bill Just as much as Bijoy. He also feels that the killer might be selecting his prey from a dating site. The result is another deliciously intricate Shabor-mystery that is fast becoming one of the most interesting, intriguing and well-made whodunit thrillers of recent times Tollywood.

Arindam Sil is at it again. His Shabor films have been laced with matured contents and issues that haven’t been dealt with that much in Bengali thrillers. Here we get a suspect who we believe is the killer because his an approaching-40-male having his way with a 20 something girl. He was married officially for one night after which his wife couldn’t take his sexual onslaught and left him. He is hated by one and all and we too want to take the same path. However, as the film progresses, Sil pulls back layer after layer revealing that the man in question might not be the lecherous devil that is believed to be.

The Shabor films have all been about uncontrolled urges and terrifying releases of that. Aschhe Abar Shabor is no different. Like the previous films, what works in its favor is an absorbing mystery that is dipped in desire, madness and sexual overtones and doesn’t let us guess the killer. By the time the credits roll, the viewer is completely satisfied with what the story had to offer. This film does one better than the 2nd installment by being faster in its unfolding of the events. I felt that the 2nd installment could have been faster and brought an unnecessary and unwarranted amount of melodrama to the table. Aschhe Abar Shabor is to the point and curt in its tackling of the events and doesn’t let off the grip on the audiences. For a film that deals with such a serious topic, it does have a curiously high amount of comic dose which incidentally works wonderfully.

Subhrajeet Dutta is hilarious as the not-so-good English speaking assistant of Shabor, SI Nandalal Roy. His serious self-sure manner of confusing stuff like “hard party” with “hard potty” keeping a straight face will definitely tickle your funny bones. The scene where he has to go undercover to track down the killer and poses as a film producer to pump out information from an escort was equally funny. Saswata strikes up a wonderful chemistry with him which has been growing through the films that they have been doing together. There is a sense of comfort between them now and also an understanding of each other’s comic timing which greatly helps their act on screen.

It wouldn’t be wrong to say that Saswata is 80% of the film and he is the kind of actor who can pull off a film that depends so much on his act alone. He is incessantly charismatic and absorbing. He has that trademark “dadagiri” about his character that has been liked so much in the previous films. He is also able to hit a sweet spot between serious and funny ensuring that the audiences are neither repelled by the overly serious nature of the content nor get detached from the subject because of the overuse of comic elements. Suffice is to say that he is the best choice for the role and he proves that in every scene that he is a part off. Indraneil doesn’t have much to do after he is thrashed by the public in the film. Whatever he does before that is in sync with the character that he is playing and it is apt.

The only issue with the film is that none of the supporting actors have much to do as their characters are written in the most generic manner possible. There are many characters and all of them contribute to the big picture but none of them hold much of a value on their own. However, when put together they do make for an interesting potpourri and that’s exactly what the film cashes in on. With Saswata at the top of his game and chewing up the screen when in the company of any other actor, the audiences will hardly miss any other solid performance.

Overall, Aschhe Abar Shabor is endowed with everything that made its predecessors popular. It is a racy and glitzy thriller that has enough in terms of story and performances to make you sit through its runtime without batting an eyelid. Add to that a charismatic Saswata and a more than competent Subhrajeet and you have a film that is a perfect entertainer. Aschhe Abar Shabor is available on Amazon Prime video for all those who haven’t seen it already.

Rating: 3.5/5 (3.5 out of 5 Stars)

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