Joram movie review: Manoj Bajpayee is effective in grim survival tale | Movie-review News


Devashish Makhija makes movies about people on the margins, compelled to switch on their survival mode in the face of great odds. His fourth feature ‘Joram’ reunites him with Manoj Bajpayee who was terrific as a retired low-level policeman in ‘Bhonsle’: here, the latter plays a tribal on the run, keeping at bay inimical forces from within his own people, as well as those who are hunting him from the outside. Is there anyone left on his side?

Dasru (Bajpayee) and Vaano (Chatterjee) are forced to leave behind an idyllic life in their Jharkhand village, and move to a concrete construction in Mumbai. A violent killing, in which Dasru is made to participate, is the catalyst for their flight. But five years on, coming face-to-face with the formidable tribal leader Phulo Karma (Tambe) sets into motion a series of terrible events, which sees Dasru fleeing with his three-month-old baby daughter named Joram.

Chasing him is the exhausted police inspector Ratnakar (Ayyub) who is reluctantly following orders from above; those giving the orders are also under orders. This chain of command, stretching from a Mumbai top cop to a ramshackle thana in a Jharkand village, gives you a clear glimpse of how power shifts, and has always shifted, in India. If greedy corporates are eyeing ore-rich land in forested areas which has been home to tribes for centuries, the only way in is to break their unity, and once that chink occurs, it can only widen.

The most effective part of this grim survival tale is the shift in Ayyub’s cop, as he understands just how hard circumstances have been for Dasru and his infant. The ‘thana’ has a lock-up stuffed illegally with minors (again, on orders from above), dusty guns which haven’t been used for ages, and cellphones hanging from locked cages on a tree, close to a charging source of electricity. It is starkly dystopian. A dug-up landscape, with bulldozers hacking away at pristine grounds, tells you of human rapacity, even as Dasru’s constantly stricken face begs for compassion.

Bajpayee is effective, needless to say, but is given a limited register of despair and terror. The relationship between Phulo Kamra and her right-hand woman Bidesi (Mathur) feels a bit contrived. But the film, even though mining familiar territory– corrupt politicians and venal cops, Naxalite forces and ‘sympathisers,’ and innocent individuals stuck in between– does well to leaven the bleakness with a sliver of hope.

Festive offer

Joram movie cast: Manoj Bajpayee, Mohammad Zeeshan Ayyub, Tannishtha Chatterjee, Smita Tambe, Megha Mathur
Joram movie director: Devashish Makhija
Joram movie rating: Two and a half stars


Mohd Aman

Editor in Chief Approved by Indian Government

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button