Directed by Ayan Acharyya | Review by Panchali Kar
[dropcap]Chocolate[/dropcap] ― a simple yet heart wrenching tale that revolves around chocolate and a member of a nuclear family whose priorities revolve around professional success. We see a daughter craving for affection from her parents who are busy in sorting their career. Their conversations ponder on to business ideas, profit-loss ratio, and strategy planning. She’s been constantly ignored in front of other priorities. The girl keeps waiting for her parents to return with a bar of chocolate; because that’s the only form of fondness she gets from her parents. Her parents complete shun down her need for a quality time with them, which in turn turns her hostile. Instead of understanding her issues, her parents punish her for being stubborn.
This is a common scenario on today’s date. The distance between every two members in a family is increasing by miles. Career and money is becoming our bigger priority than our parents, siblings, or children. We are compensating for the lack of affection with some gift. We are treating the younger ones and the elders as the second class citizen because they don’t add value to our focus, which is fixed on the material pleasure.
In the latter half of the movie, the parents of the little girl finally realise their mistakes, on their confrontation with their family friend’s daughter who is suffering from Cerebral Palsy. She’s wheelchair bound and her chances of living a normal life is extremely thin. The mother breaks into tears seeing the other girl and realise how lucky they are to have a daughter and they are taking her for granted.
Chocolate revolves around a very important subject to highlight, and for a debut film it was quite a good attempt. Ayan Acharyya the director himself took care of all the other departments of crafts, starting from the script to the screenplay, cinematography, editing.
Among all the attributes the Cinematography stands out. Beautifully designed monochrome frames, each of which qualifies to be a photograph on its own. The performances and the dialogue delivery have some room for improvement, however the actors did put in their hard work and that is visible in the film. Both the young girls were beautifully believable and heart-warming. The editing is smart, especially in several instances.
The light designing was interesting, which did compliment the astounding cinematography. The screenplay was simplistic. At the point of focus the introduction of the characters by the busyness of their footsteps, was a clever move to set the expectation of the audience straight. The character build up was appropriate as per the mood of the film, the slow paced advances of the girl versus her ever busy parents. The close ups are worth mentioning, and they did contribute a lot to establish the characters successfully.
Irrespective of the technical nitty-gritty, it is an important film and one must watch it for the sake of the message, and try to realise the same in their personal lives as well.
Panchali Kar is a Dancer, Choreographer, Actor and Filmmaker. In addition, Panchali is a devout advocate for egalitarian social change, is affiliated with the NGO, Responsible Charity and currently working on a photo documentary on LGBT rights. She is an avid scholar and veteran of the performing arts and a seasoned instructor. Panchali maintains several degrees in the Arts including a M.Mus degree.