Director Rituparno Ghosh
Cast Raima Sen,Riya Sen,Jishu Sengupta,Prosenjit Chatterjee
‘Kashmakash is the dubbed-in-Hindi version of the Bangla Noukadoobi,based on Rabindranath Tagores story of the same name. When you see it leisurely unfold its riches you know why the story is considered a classic : the interplay of power and emotions between men and women is a timeless thing,and it is as valid today as it was when the story was written all those decades ago.
Ghoshs gift in bringing a period piece alive is evident in each frame of Kashmakash. The grand house in which Hemnalini ( Raima) lives with her father and brother is redolent with wealth and taste. The man she loves is poor,and Rameshs ( Sengupta) dwelling reflects his financial state clearly. Ramesh is forced into marrying a girl of his fathers choice. The ceremony is followed by their boat capsizing ( nouka doobi),and he wakes up to find a bedraggled bride lying next to him. Susheela ( Riya) is a simple young girl who cannot understand why her husband remains so aloof. In a twist worthy of the most convoluted Bollywood masala film,it transpires that a doctor in Banaras ( Chatterjee) is the missing link in this foursome,connected by cruel fate and a calamitous boat-wreck.
Kashmakash is nicely acted ( Raima is maturing into an actress; even the usually irritating Riya is bearable here),but has minimal impact. The Bangla original which I saw a few months ago works much better than the Hindi one,which brings to the fore all the problems that dubbed content has. The lip synch is so disconcerting that you start feeling a disconnect : you can never get the easy conversational tones of the original when you dub. It will always be a different language.