Movie Review – Rodor Sithi
Rodor Sithi (Scarecrow) is an Assamese experimental drama film directed by Baharul Islam and based on his play Beyond the Obvious. The film centres on the ideals of a nameless character played by Angaraag Mahanta and lives of his family revolving around his death and their own personal struggle.
Along with Angaraag’s impressive screen debut, the movie also features Zubeen Garg and Adil Hussain in other notable roles. One performance that deserves a special mention here is the soul-stirring one delivered by Kannada theatre actress Bhagirathi who also happens to be the wife of the director. Her portrayal of an emotionally conflicted character has earned the accolades it is sure to collect. Adil Hussain was pleasing as usual. Zubeen Garg has already proved his acting capability with earlier performances in Assamese movies and here his dialogue, “Ghor eri gusi jam baapeke” reminded me of his role in Mon Jaai. Other mainstream characters were played by students of Seagull Theater Academy including Barkha Bahar, daughter of the director, who played a very convincing role and surely has a promising future in acting.
Though the film used a conventional style of storytelling with flashbacks and musical assistance, it abruptly shifted platforms from a feature film to that of a dark experimental stage play scenario, which was strongly felt whenever the scenes involved the confounded daughters of the onscreen couple looking for answers to the labyrinth in their lives. The music was again a piece of genius by Zubeen Garg and paid rich tribute to late poet Hiren Bhattacharya as Papon and Zubeen lent their voices. The dialogues were filled with poetical intimacy and beautiful ideals. Even the cinematography was very aesthetically done. The film also cleverly sheds some light on the issue of organ donation without being preachy or trying to forcefully input any social message. Though the climax of the film was like Braille – making the audience take a few steps on their own to find an interpretation, while also leaving it open to an extent – Rodor Sithi is a beautiful saga of our struggles with life, the answer to which lies in the nature.