Whatever you do, do not fall in love.
Love will consume you, embitter you, devastate you. Love will lead you to destruction.
The past three generations have seen Devdas, adapted from Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay`s novel, in some form or the other, the most recent being Sanjay Leela Bhansali`s successful attempt in 2002. We already know the story inside out - or do we?
Meet Anurag Kashyap`s Dev (Abhay Doel)- he`s brash, arrogant, ill-mannnered, demanding, lusty, impulsive and yes, self destructive.
Meet Dev`s Paro (Mahi Gill) - she`s beautiful, doesn`t mind sending snaps in the buff to her lover and breaks into a jig at her own wedding.
Meet fate`s abandoned Chanda (Kalki Koechlin) or Lenny as we are intially introduced to her as. She loves her parents, goes to school, and well...on the way meets her boyfriend who ends up doing a lewd MMS on her. Life is cruel and Lenny becomes Chanda or Chandramukhi as we know her. Please note - the girl still continues her education.
It`s not only that Kashyap has successfully stirred clear of drawing caricatures of the characters we already know, he`s reinvented the wheel in other ways too. Sample this - it`s not caste or class differences that separates the two young lovers, it`s libido and a momentary lapse of reason.
Dev never was in control and Paro`s marriage gives him the trigger to go full throttle towards destruction. He comes to Delhi and walks into Paharganj.
With the name of Paro on his lips, Dev crashes to sleep on Chanda`s bed as she smokes a cigarette and watches him curiously. Love or `emosanal atyachar`?
While Punjab was the setting for the first half of the film, it`s the bylanes and the bars of Paharganj where the action takes place in the second half. The editing is dizzy and effective, the music good in parts, the performances by all three lead actors are spot on - extra marks to Kalki.
As you watch the film and see Dev steadily guzzle vodka and obsess about his lost love you wonder when he will hit rock bottom.
But love is also known to set you free, uplift you, rescue you.
So, go fall in love.
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Dev D is a modern take on Devdas the novel written by Sarat Chandra. Though
Devdas has been adapted on screen many times and by some illustrious filmmakers
like P.C.Barua and Bimal Roy Dev.D will still appear as fresh and riveting a
tale of love lost and self-destruction.
Classically Devdas has been hailed as the ultimate lover who drowns himself when he looses his love and goes into the path of self-destruction. Dev.D on the other hand unabashedly proclaims Dev as the hypocrite who drowns in self pity and as a man who could not stand up for himself.
Dev.D breaks all the typecasts of the original novel including it‘s principal characters. Dev.D in essence is the tale of a man who goes into self destruction but the circumstances and the characters he meets are the people we meet and know and are of this generation.
Unlike prior endeavours by filmmakers like Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Dev D is set in modern world where plastic money like ATM debit and Credit cards play more important role than hard cash, there is advance mode of communication like mobile, internet chatting instead of traditional means like telegrams. Globalization has expanded the horizon of technological availability.
Dev.D will be shot in the winters of Punjab and Delhi. The backdrop to this saga oscillates between the rustic and colorful Punjab to the Foggy and Dingy lanes of Pahadganj, connaought place and Old Delhi.
Dev.D has been scripted by Anurag Kashyap the writer of contemporary classics of cinema like Satya, Kaun, Shool,Yuva,Water. He has also directed the critically acclaimed Black Friday and the soon to release No-Smoking with John Abraham. Anurag Kashyap also has Paanch his hard-hitting directorial debut and Gulal ready for release.
Dev.D is being produced by UTV and Line produced by Flying Unicorn Entertainments.