Dev D is about self-centered existence, suffering with self-pity and meekly surrendering to the fatigued fates, while extraneous circumstances add fuel to the fire of self-destruction.
Devender Singh Dhillon (Abhay Deol), born with a silver spoon, is sent away to London at the age of 12 and returns as an aimless youth. He finds intimacy with his childhood friend Paro (Mahi Gill). Dev wants love. He has everything but doesn’t find love. He appears engulfed by psychological, emotional, social and cultural cross currents and fails to find the courage of conviction.
Dev’s self-centeredness creates a rift with Paro who agrees to marry an aged widower. Dev is out of whatever elements he had thus far and drifts into the apparent delusions offered by drugs and vodka.
While sinking deeper into remorseful depression, Dev accosts Chanda (Kalki Koechlin) who offers flesh stimulation in the night while being Lenny in the day attending college. She is alone staying with a pimp after being thrown out by her family following a MMS sex clip episode involving her.
Will Dev discover his love in his violent passions or will he tread the path of virulent self-destruction?
Abhay Deol essayed his role with ease and some conviction. Mahi Gill did not look like a first timer. She performed within the limitations of her role. Kalki Koechlin, who has theatre background, has shown the skill while playing a typical out of the way character. All other artistes are quite adequate in their respective roles.
The story has its bright spots but the screenplay wavers as the narration appears go downhill just like the characters of Dev D. A modern take on Devdas could have experimented with some original variation leading to the climax. May be a self-realised Devdas becoming a saint?
Cinematography and editing are top class. Music is good.
Dev D is certainly an attempt to breakaway from the mainstream Bollywood formula cinema. Anurag Kashyap has put forth his interpretation of an erratic character who has the knack of complicating a simple relationship into a complex matrix of confusion and descending into a compounding circumstances of indiscriminate self-abuse.
The director presented the film in his own style and structure. This film has the body of narration and the mind of music. Somehow, the soul is missing.
Dev D is strictly a mall&multiplex fare.
The Cast and Crew
Abhay Deol, Kalki Koechlin, Mahi Gill, Dibyendu Bhattacharya
Assistant Director: Vasan Bala, Anand Vijayraj Singh Tomar
Cinematographer: Rajeev Ravi
Story Writer: Vikramaditya Motwane, Anurag Kashyap
Music Director: Amit Trivedi
Playback Singer: Aditi Sharma, Amit Trivedi, Shilpa Rao, Shruti Pathak, Labh Janjua
Lyricist: Mani , Amitabh Bhattacharya
Producer: Ronnie Screwvala
Banner: UTV Spot Boy
Director: Anurag Kashyap
2.5 out of 5
Review by Deen Kumar
1 poor 2 average 3 good 4 very good 5 excellent