Written by: #RashedRahaman
Short Film Review by: #ChrisBuick
Puti (Das) and Shyamal (Rahaman), two young people in love, meet on the shoreline of a river where they meet every day to discuss their future, one that is unfortunately becoming increasingly finite due to Puti’s ongoing battle with cancer. Unsure how much time they have left, they reflect on their relationship and lives as they try to digest the meaning of this terrible disease.
One would think that a premise such as the aforementioned would be extremely fertile ground for emotional heft, character investment and profound perspectives on life. But unfortunately, Pirit is a film that says a whole lot without ever actually saying anything at all.
Rahaman’s film is essentially a series of half-baked and pretty disconnected conversations between our two leads that are over just as quickly as they start, randomly digressing from one subject to the next until the film finally slumps over the finish line. When it does finally get round to trying to make its point, it’s a rather sudden, empty and ultimately fleeting attempt to say something meaningful without ever really coming close.
It’s possible that a fair amount of the film’s gravitas may have been lost with some of the mismatched translations, with some sections not being translated at all, most notably and frustratingly in the scene where it matters the most where Puti discovers Shyamal’s letter explaining why he doesn't show in their favourite spot the next day like they agreed, with no discernible context from what happened prior for us to even hazard a guess (the voiceover reading that letter also isn’t translated). It’s highly doubtful the message had enough in it to suddenly turn this film around, but frustrating nonetheless and instead, we are presented with a closing song and montage to play out our confusion that despite being so desperately saccharine somehow only adds to the bitter taste left in our mouths.
Technically, the film is ok, but certainly nothing to write home about. It may not be the case, but the dialogue seems to have been layered over the top afterwards, definitely on a different track from the rest of the film, majorly disconnecting the dialogue from the action and therefore us as viewers from the characters.
But while both the sound and the writing can for sure be pointed to for the film's inability to get us to connect with it, a good share of the reason why we never warm to either of these two ill-fated lovers is the complete lack of belief in the two lead performances. Every line from Das is delivered with the same level of unimpressed apathy, whether talking about the mundanity of crops or the seriousness of her condition, before suddenly turning the dial up completely with a cringeworthy display of melodrama during the closing scenes. Rahaman at least tries to show a few different layers but they never run very deep at all, a basic summation of Pirit if there ever was one.
Pirit is a film desperately trying to pull at our heartstrings but it’s haphazard delivery and lack of any real conviction or emotional depth in its story means its barely even clutching at straws. We can see what Rahaman is aiming for, but the target is miles in the distance from where this particular film lands in terms of delivery.