Pagglait Review (No Spoilers): Somehow This Doesn’t Quite Come Together?

I watched this because y’all told me it was good, and I was curious anyway. And then, I don’t know, it just didn’t work for me.

It’s okay to have a movie that is just a pleasant slice of life thing. It doesn’t actually go anywhere, you just enjoy spending time with people. But this movie felt odd to me, because it was going somewhere, just going to a whole bunch of different places, like it changed scene by scene. I didn’t even know for sure who the main character was! Mostly the film seemed to be saying it was Sanya, but then there were all these scenes and plots unrelated to her? Just CONFUSING.

Download Pagglait (2021) Movie HD Official Poster 1 - BollywoodMDB

If I am being generous, I can say it is the fog and confusion of grief. The shock following an unexpected death, the rush of emotions, the mixture of guilt and fear and all of those things that come with a major life change. But just because the characters are being a fog and confusion of grief doesn’t mean the movie has to be! Compare it with, for instance, the film Cake to see how it is possible to show characters spinning in a million directions without losing focus on what the film itself wants to say.

Along with not knowing what message the film wanted was this strong sense of the film not quite grasping it’s female characters. It should be a female showpiece, the bones of the story are in the triangle of Sanya-Sayani Gupta-Sheeba Chaddha, with Shruti Sharma as an echoing chorus. But instead whenever the move turned towards them it felt like it was struggling to maintain focus, like it wanted to keep spinning away towards their husbands, their fathers, anyone MALE. In the same way, it kept spinning away from the female places of the world (bedrooms, kitchens, caring for the elderly) where the focus should be into the male places (bank loans, offices, coffee shops).

If I pictured this movie with all the female bits edited out, if I imagined it instead just about the father, the uncles, the younger brother, the cousin, it actually feels a lot stronger. Those areas were firm and clear. The female characters and female story I just could not grasp, could not understand what they were feeling and where they were going and who they were.


2 thoughts on “Pagglait Review (No Spoilers): Somehow This Doesn’t Quite Come Together?

  1. I started watching this movie when it came out in March and still haven’t finished it. I found it suffocating. I felt like being there in this house with Sanya and her family, which is maybe what the makers wanted, but not what I want.
    The only scene that stood out for me was when Sanya’s mother want to make a fire in the room, and Sanya tells her all the ridiculous things she made her do to find a husband.


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