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Film Review at Nation Next: Bucket List
Synopsis: Bucket List, directed by Tejas Prabha Vijay Deoskar, is the story of a simple homemaker from Pune – Madhura Sane – played by Madhuri Dixit Nene. After undergoing a heart transplant, Madhura sets out to discover details about her organ donor, only to realise that the donor was a 20-year-old girl named Sai Deshpande. In the process of her discovery, Madhura stumbles upon a list of Sai’s unfulfilled desires. As a mark of gratitude to Sai’s heart that is alive in Madhura’s body, she strives to complete Sai’s ‘Bucket List.’ It’s while ticking off items one by one in the bucket list, Madhura finds herself on the path of self-discovery and self-realisation.
Madhura is a traditional yet adventurous, rooted yet free-spirited woman, who when tastes freedom, sheds inhibitions and ditches familial norms to achieve her bucket list. From riding a Harley Davidson and getting sloshed in a pub, to getting arrested by cops and going ‘viral,’ this quintessential ‘gruhini’ of an upper middle class Maharastrian family starts living life no-holds-barred.
While the director - Tejas Prabha Vijay Deoskar - has cleverly concealed being in awe of 'Madhuri - the star,' his fondness towards 'Madhuri - the actor' is palpable in the film. Full marks to 35-year-old Tejas for striking a fine balance in exploring the stardom and acting prowess of Madhuri Dixit, whom he is directing for the first time in 'Bucket List.'
Ranbir Kapoor’s cameo appearance in the movie further paces up an already breezy and effortless screenplay. Sumeet Raghavan (Mohan), in a diversion from his charming boyish character 'Sahil' of Sarabhai Vs Sarabhai, fits the bill perfectly as Madhura’s mature and supportive husband. Madhura’s mother-in-law played by seasoned actor Vandana Gupte justifies her role of a Punekar to the T, with her hilarious Hindi dialogues decorated with Marathi accent and words. Resham Tipnis, as Lavina Mewara, portrays the character of a fun-loving and carefree girl, who timely convinces Madhura to commit mistakes, unapologetically.
Renuka Shahane, who plays Sai’s mother, recreates magic with Madhuri as she reunites with her on the silver screen after 23 years of Hum Aapke Hai Koun..! Veteran actor Shubha Khote effortlessly hogs the limelight as the super-cool ‘Panji’ (Madhura’s grandmother-in-law). Such is Panji’s cool quotient that she recommends Madhura to have tequila shots, wine, whiskey and beer (in the same order) at the pub. She even offers Madhura a spoonful of curd as a good omen before the latter makes her drinking debut!
As a smart marketing move, this family-drama accommodates multiple in-film branding of certain brands i.e. Saraswat Bank, Max Fashion, Make My Trip, etc., which are targeted towards family audience. However, on certain occasions, the branding becomes a bit in the face. Cinematographer Arjun Sorte has done a great job by showcasing locations aesthetically, especially Madhuri’s picturesque house and the portions shots in Malaysia. Music is soothing! Music composers Rohan Pradhan and Rohan Gokhale have also done a fine job with the background score of the film.
Bucket List becomes dull and dragged in certain scenes (like the pub scene where Madhuri gets into drunken tomfoolery) but, immediately bounces back with emotional moments. At some places, the movie is relatable with the Sridevi starrer English Vinglish, as Madhura’s daughter Radhika also trivialises her mother’s efforts, only to realise her worth in the end.
Bucket List is a movie not-to-be missed by Madhuri fans. With chaste Marathi and simple sarees, Madhuri, in her debut Marathi film, is every bit of a domestic goddess, who seduces the camera even in her 50’s.
NATION NEXT RATINGS
Film : (4/5)
Produced by: Vivek Rangachari, Arun Rangachari, Aarti Subhedar, Amit Parikh, Jamashp Bapuna, Ashok Subhedar
Direction: (4/5) Tejas Vijay Deoskar
Performances: Madhuri Dixit Nene (5/5); Sumeet Raghavan (4.5/5), Renuka Shahane (5/5), Vandana Gupte (4.5/5), Shubha Khote (4.5/5)
Story: (4/5) Tejas Vijay Deoskar
Screenplay: (3.5/5) Tejas Vijay Deoskar, Devashree Shivadekar
Lyrics: (3.5/5) Mandar Cholkar, Tejas Vijay Deoskar
Music: (4/5) Rohan Pradhan, Rohan Gokhale
Art Direction: (3.5/5) Siddharth Tatooskar
Cinematography: (3.5/5) Arjun Sorte
Editing: (3.5/5) Abhijeet Balaji Deshpande
Takeaway: Madhuri Dixit Nene scores a ton in her Marathi debut!