The film tries to realistically portray the life a rickshawala in Kolkata and in the process, creates a story of hopelessness. Manoj, a BCom final year student, loses hope, his girlfriend and his dreams after he takes over the family business of pulling a rickshaw. So, in a way, the film is nothing more than a documentary on his life and its downs.
Performances are not the film’s forte either, with just three characters — Manoj, his girlfriend (Kasturi Chakraborty) and a homemaker (Sangita Sinha) who lusts for Manoj — getting enough scope to perform. Avinash gets the lion’s share of screen time and walks away with a decent performance. But the exchanges with his parents seem a bit too dramatic and forced most of the time. Another drawback is the casting itself. Avinash doesn’t look like an undergraduate student and so doesn’t Kasturi. They could have passed for a slightly older couple but definitely not college students. His parents, however, are a perfect cast, though not the best when it comes to performances.
The film tries to highlight the uncertain future of Kolkata’s ‘heritage’ hand-pulled rickshaws but also creates a paradox of sorts by focusing even more on the hardships the rickshaw-pullers have to face in the hands of political goons and customers alike. Like governments and political parties before it, the film doesn’t provide a solution; it just makes the most of a problematic legacy.
One of the highlights of the film is the music, with the song sequences going well with the mood on screen. But the visuals of a band performing the songs are jarring, as there’s no correlation between these appearances and the film itself.