The hero and the heroine gets married and live happily ever after. Most of the old Indian movies ended with the hero and heroine getting married in the end. The other alternative to the end would be the song from the movie shown again with “The End” shown. The marriage end would have the title as “The beginning”
Kedar Shinde’s Marathi movie “Yanda Kartavya aahe” (YKA) starts from the point where the above movies had ended. The days after the marriage. The only difference is that the marriage is an arranged marriage, not the typical love marriage. The term “Yanda Kartavya Aahe” literally translated means Taking responsibility this year and actually means that the person is ready for marriage.
YKA is a sweet funny story about two people thrown into matrimony and discovering each other. It could be called a realistic version of Sooraj Barjatja movies without the overly candy floss treatment. There are no big houses, no army of relatives, no sugary sweet people and no romantic dialog.
The story is simple. It can be summed in two lines. Rahul Desai, an employee of a bank is arrange married to Swati due to illness of his grandmother who wants to see her grandson’s wedding. The couple hardly know each other. Both are of the shy kind who seldom talk intimately to a person of the opposite sex. Both of them go for their honeymoon. The rest of the story is of the four days at their honeymoon.
The story is nothing but events in those four days. The story does not have any high drama or twist. It just something that every married couple has experienced in their life. Arranged marriage is still a valid concept in India. Mostly in middle class families and in Indian society where dating is still looked down upon, arranged marriage is still going strong. Falling in love and getting married may be normal in many countries of the world. In India, its getting married and then falling in love and still most of these marriages do succeed. I guess that’s what we call really working on a relationship means.
“YKA” works basically on this concept. The hero is a middle class working person. He actually isn’t a hero. He feels more like someone within us. He does not have a larger than life image. Even when his wife is lost in the crowd, he does not go searching or shouting for his wife. He just goes to the nearest police station and at the same time feeling pretty embarrassed about losing his wife.
Marriage are made to be glamorous and start of a new life. “YKA” looks beyond the glamour and the ground realities. Marriage is India are a big affair, with lots of function and rituals. Although a part of the tradition, it is troublesome for the husband wife, like the fire during the marriage and the smoke can be irritating for the eyes. The Arranged marriage where two strangers promise to stay with each other without actually knowing each other relying on just a biodata is scary and yet many do manage. In dating where one has the option of breaking up, arranged marriage is a permanent commitment.
“YKA” shows the couple getting adjusted to each other’s personality, personal habits and mood swings. He eats when he feels hungry. She does not touches food without a bath. She liked being photographed. He dreads being photographed. He drinks and she does not like it. He likes English movies, She thinks they are vulgar.
“YKA” shows tender moments between the developing relationship of husband and wife, moments that make strangers become friends. The fights, the knowing glances, even the inhibition of having sex is handled quite well.
Ankush Choudhary plays Rahul Desai, the husband. He plays the shy, confused husband who wants to show off in front of his wife and also make an impression and fails miserably. He is more controlled than many movies he had acted in.
Smita Shewale plays Swati, the wife. She is shy and good. For a newcomer, its an impressive debut.
Then there is Mohan Joshi who plays the Hotel Manager but is ok. There are other characters playing small parts and each makes an impression.
The story and Dialog is by Rasika Joshi. Rasika Joshi is the actress who plays Tushar Kapoor’s mother in “Gayab” (Now if you can remember Gayab?). She has managed to string a series of events into a good story. The dialog are also realistic without going into much melodrama.
The songs are also good especially the song “Abhas haa” and “We are honeymooners” . The song Abhaas haa is pictured also quite well.
This is Kedar Shinde third directorial venture, the first being “Aga Bai Arechya” and “Jatra“. After disappointing a little in Jatra, Kedar Shinde gets it almosr perfect this time. Its really noteworthy that “YKA” has captured the sentiments of the common man.
“YKA” is about couples who had been married through arrange marriage. The excitement, the fear, the feeling of being with a complete stranger and all emotions one feels in an arranged marriage is shown beautifully. People might actually re-live their experience seeing this film. As for those who were married through love marriage, they can see what they escaped.