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My Brother ..... Nikhil

The weekend is here and many of you must be planning to watch a movie. I saw ‘My Brother Nikhil’ (yes my own name too is Nikhil!) yesterday at R-Adlabs, Mulund. The movie is well made and does justice to the sensitive subject it deals with. Here’s a review of the movie from me. If you are not interested in my review here’s a link to a good professional review

http://in.rediff.com/movies/2005/mar/25brother.htm

While Swades was a documentary presented as a movie/fiction, ‘My Brother Nikhil’ is a fiction presented like a documentary. It is a flashback narrative primarily by – Nikhil’s sister Anamika (Juhi Chawla), mother (Lillete Dubey), father (Victor Banerjee) and most importantly a dear friend Nigel (Purab Kohli). With dates appearing in the bottom left corner as every scene changes the documentary effect is so complete that sometime one wonders if this is indeed fiction or reality.
Those of you who have seen ‘Phir Milenge’ will find this movie a better presentation in terms of depth and width of coverage. Like classic contemporary cinema (the world over) ‘my brother Nikhil’ too presents mere facts leaving the emotional aspect for you to analyse; no forced sentimental scenes, no big dialogues and no extra emotional punch. The movie covers all aspects of an HIV+ person and his environment – social boycott (by friends), professional problems (loss of job), legal issues (draconian Health Safety Act in Goa), and relationships. More over, from the educational perspective also, the movie covers a whole gamut of issues – even homosexual relationships. Probably the width of coverage in this movie is wider as compared to ‘Phir Milenge’ because the story is set in a small, less developed place like Goa and that too in the early days of AIDS awareness (1987-1994) when hardly anyone knew about the syndrome. The fact that the victim Nikhil himself is not clearly informed of his state till he is arrested by police (for being an AIDS patient!) explains the kind of ignorance, fear and social stigma that existed in our society then – and even today in many areas. The acting, needless to say, is great and so is the direction. Sanjay Suri playing the central character can be credited with the best role; however every actor has performed her/his role in the best possible manner.
There is some wit and humour in the first half of the movie but all in all it is a movie for a serious mood – obviously so. You also get a lot of view of the clean virgin beaches of Goa (but no tourist scenes – those who are hoping to see that please keep away :D ) and lots of greenery.
Juhi of course is as refreshing as ever in her cute smile and at the same time she plays her role of being a sensitive yet strong sister perfectly. In fact I should admit that I had never expected the childish looking Juhi to do such mature roles in movies before ‘Jhankaar Beats’. This itself speaks of her maturity as an actor – few actresses have succedded in reinventing themselves without taking up ‘mother roles’ in Indian cinema.
Another aspect worth appreciating in the movie is the way relationships have been depicted – firstly the relationship between the brother and sister, then the homosexual friendship (without a single compromising scene) and even relationship between the parents and the Nikhil’s friend after his demise.

Watching this movie you start questioning like – am I really educated enough about AIDS? What if someone around me gets infected? And finally what if I get infected?

1 Comments to " My Brother ..... Nikhil "

  1. hey nikhil
    MBN is an honest effort to educate viewers without the emotional barrage that viewers are subjected to..purab's acting was refreshing...and one more point..the main character was damn lucky to have a sister and a friend to stick by, all the time !!
    waise wat u doin these days?

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