Celebration of subaltern lives

A scene from the film Benkipatna.

A scene from the film Benkipatna.  

Benkipatna (Kannada)

Director: T.K. Dayanand

Cast: Pratap Narayan, Anushree, Prakash Belwadi, B. Suresh, Arun Sagar

It appears that short-story writer T.K. Dayanand is continuing a long tradition of Kannada litterateurs turning into filmmakers. In Benkipatna, Dayanand has made a sincere attempt to present the life of pourakarmikas from all possible angles.

While most of writers, including Girish Karnad, Baraguru Ramachandrappa, P. Lankesh and Chandrashekara Kambara, have indentified themselves with parallel cinema, Dayanand has tried his hand at mainstream films and it seems, his aspiration for commercial success will yield results.

Dayanand has explored the possibility of visual medium to reach out to a large audience by presenting a serious social issue with a perfect blend of commercial ingredients, especially humour.

His effort needs appreciation as he dares to explore the often neglected subaltern society. Benkipatna is a love story of a young man, who makes a living selling rat poison, and a pourakarmika. Dayanand tries his best to break the stereotype portrayal of poverty on the screen and presents a counter argument to the urban steeped mainstream cinema. It celebrates subaltern life.

But, if audience expects blood bath and brandishing of machetes, they are sure to be disappointed.

Besides being pro-life, Benkipatna is all about the ills of society.

At times, the script traverses through finer political elements such as the Anna Bhagya scheme. While entertainment and comedy forms the first half of the movie, the twist comes in the second half and the climax leaves the audiences shocked.

Anushree steals the show with her performance and dialogue delivery. Pratap Narayan does not disappoint. Prakash Belwadi, Arun Sagar and B. Suresh have filled life into their characters.

The song ‘Bogaseyalli’ is already a hit.


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