Bhubaneswar: ‘Thukul’ is a typical term used among the rural folks, in Odisha. Especially, it is applied during some games played by young children in rural and semi-urban environment. The word straight communicates- ‘Freeze’, ‘Pause’ or ‘Stop’. When a player or a friend pronounces the word ‘Thukul’, everything freezes instantly.
‘Thukul’ is a very charming, vibrating and intimate expression used among close friends in different life situations too. Filmmaker Prasant Nanda has rightly understood the electrifying effects of the word and engaged it to capture the audience in his just-released movie ‘Thukul’. As the story of the movie moves forward everything freezes around Pancham and Tithi when it comes to love. Absolutely freezing!
Everything Freezes in Love
Pancham, a young budding singer meets Tithi, a young Odissi dancer in a state level dance and music competition. Both of them stood first in their respective domains and get lots of appreciation. Pancham is a self styled boy and deeply driven by emotions. He is from a very affluent family.
Tithi is a simple, innocent girl who wants to pursue her passion with Odissi dance. But her father is in a hurry to see her married soon as he is suffering from liver cancer. Destiny plays its role. Tithi’s father dies after an emotional shock when her marriage breaks due to the adamant behavior of the groom. Her would be husband describes Tithi as a ‘nachawali’ and refuses to marry her.
Tithi’s Odissi Guru, who was determined to take her to the greatest height in life, also disappears one day out of sheer frustration. Thus suddenly Tithi becomes completely alone in the world. Here Pancham extends his hand of support as a friend.
But Pancham is committed to Aaina, a chulbuli girl, who dreams to marry the boy. The family members of Pancham and Aaina are also committed on the relationship. But, what happens when Tithi, gets into the triangle!.
The love and expression of Aaina towards Pancham is always clear and loud. But Tithi plays the role of a silent lover throughout. The story takes many turns all the way till the climax when Tithi finally announces ‘Thukul’ and gives an emotional checkmate to Pancham from getting into the laps of Aaina. And then Pancham and Tithi lived happily there after!
Ollywood loverboy Babushan plays the role of Pancham while Archita plays the role of Tithi and Prakruti Mishra plays the role of Aaina. Aparajita has acted as the mother of Pancham. The story mostly moves around these four characters.
Typical Prasant Nanda Creation
‘Thukul’, as Prasant Nanda’s creations go, can be described as a typical and unusual love story full of family drama and packed with emotion and commercial kicks. Mr. Nanda has played all the roles, like story, screenplay and dialogue writer, lyrics, music, direction and editing while Mr. Akshay Parija has played the role of a Producer. This duo, after the success of their last film- ‘Jianta Bhoota’ has made a mark in presenting such a good and clean movie to the Odia audience. They describe ‘Thukul’ as a true Odia film!
The storytelling is good. The pace of the story is well calculated. The director has perhaps tried with all the techniques of audience-engagement till the last minutes of the movie. It seems as if there are many small and side stories which are unfolding within the main track of the drama. So there are so many climax-like situations found in the cinema.
Prasant Nanda has placed many lead artists, like Sritam Das, Kuna Tripathy, Samaresh, Minaketan, Illu Banerjee, in this movie but has given each their space.
Jagannath, Odissi and Aarisa Pitha
In addition to an unusual story, good lyric and music, and pure commercial elements, Prasant Nanda has tried to capture the emotion of Odia audience by focusing on Odia Culture. He has taken Jagannath and Odissi as two major identities of Odia and Odisha and featured them well.
Though Tithi faces a lot of hurdles in her path of life and love, she never leaves Odissi dance. Similarly, in a dramatic situation when Pancham faces serious and irrevocable brain disorder Tithi dares to use Odissi dance and seeks the blessings of Lord Jagannath to get her love back.
Prasant Nanda has also used ‘Aarisa Pitha’ (the typical deep fried pan cake made of rice and gud which is popular in Odia food culture) too to capture the emotion of the Odia audience.
The Lyrical and Emotional Songs
There are 8 songs in the cinema out of which the theme song- ‘Mitare…’ is used 2 times differently in different situations. These songs catch the emotion of audience as the lyrics perfectly blend with the storyline. It is used for expressing both joy and pain. Not only that, almost at the end of the movie the theme song is used as an endless positive attitude towards life when Tithi tries to cure Pancham with selfless love, pure dedication, the power of music and dance and the unseen blessings of Lord Jagannath.
Prasant Nanda has used one song, ‘Baja Dhol…’, as a fully commercial tune. The voice of Subhasis and Pami in this catches the audience. In the lead songs the music director has extracted the best from Udit Narayan, Babul Supriyo, Sadhna Sargam, Ira Mohanty, Sangita Mohapatra, Sangram and Krishna. The presence of Prasanta Muduli (the singer who sings in late Akshya Mohanty’s voice) is a surprise for the audience. The clear and emotional voice-crafts of singer Sohini also leaves some mark on the music lovers.
The music is cool. As the director has tried to draw a fusion between Odissi and Modern dance, the music has thus taken a blending accordingly. The music packaging shall touch the class-audience and the songs may last long in the mind of people.
Prasant Nanda is a craftsman of both classical and commercial themes. ‘Thukul’ is just a fresh example of the same. In the movie, when the director has nicely dealt with the serious and emotional subjects throughout the canvas, he has also smoothly integrated heavy dosage of comedy. Minaketan’s double meaning words and expressions are some examples. The director has also highlighted many other scenes and situations which match with the storyline but are pure commercial kicks.
The role of Kuna Tripathy, who enters almost after half time, adds value to the story. Kuna’s Urdu mixed Katki boli catches the audience.
The director and the producer have tried to capture the audience’s attention with some overseas locations and graphics. They have bank upon some famous tourist spots of Muscat which add good attraction to the movie.
As a director, Prasant Nanda has tried to get best out of all the lead artists, say Aparajita, Babushan, Archita, Kuna Tripathy, Minaketan, Sritam Das and others. Among the side-leads in lady roles Prakruti Mishra (‘Aaina’ character) and Sweta Acharya (‘Rakhel’ character) have done a good job. Abhiram Mishra’s camera works is very good.
‘Thukul’ is Mr. Akshay Parija’s (‘Mitra Creative Arts’) second productions. From the response of the premier show, Mr. Parija shows confidence that the film shall do a good business as well as draw international attention as a pure and complete Odia movie.
‘Thukul’ is the third Odia cinema which released on 12th day of the new year 2012. Earlier, ‘ Hey Sakha’ and ‘Some Thing, Some Thing’ were released on January 1 and January 8 respectively.