waiting

Hindi cinema is surely changing and the Anu Menon film “Waiting” is testimony to the new way of communication. The film has been primarily shot in Cochin and between two to four major locations with everyday situations and everyday people. Meet Shiv Kumar (Naseeruddin Shah) whose wife Pankaja (Suhasini Maniratnam) has been in a coma for over 6 months. Shiv has become his own Wikipedia on the latest medical treatments and is determined to bring back his wife to a normal life, if it were not for the uptight neuro surgeon Dr Nirupam Malhotra (Rajat Kapoor). A conundrum and company comes into Shiv’s life through Tara Kapoor Desphande (Kalki Koechlin) when she arrives overnight after learning that her husband has had a severe accident. She comes to see her husband Rajat Deshpande (Arjun Mathur) when in the “Waiting Room” of the hospital she meets Shiv and they strike up a conversation.

What unfolds next is an interesting journey, conversation and drama between these two strangers. Shiv is as old as Tara’s dad and sees life the old school way, while Tara is bursting to conclusions and it is funny how the tables turn towards the climax of the film and who teaches who how to cope.

The dialogues are almost all in English and anybody who has had their loved one hanging between a ventilator and life will easily relate to the plot. Director Anu Menon has learnt from her “London Paris New York” debacle. While the story was somewhat cute, poor screenplay did not hold it strong. Waiting is the best work so far. Naseeruddin Shah is unbeatable and Kalki is a better actress than the likes of Nargis Fakhri. Waiting is worth the watch.

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