That Girl In Yellow Boots - Review
That Girl In Yellow Boots is a simple story with soul about a girl who has lost hers and is desperately looking for it. Even if what she is looking for is an image of a father she's never had and always wanted. Whether or not she finds the father is as important as what she goes through to find him. The gritty nature of the film and the subject is not something all of us can handle for it takes guts to accept the truth about the society that we are a part of. It's an important film but not one I'd want to watch again.
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That Girl In Yellow Boots isn't a film you can enjoy. It's dark and forthright film, making it an uncomfortable watch. It makes you care for its protagonist and you don't want bad things to happen to her even as you see her make herself go through horrible actions. You feel worse for her because she goes about the moral evils from bribery to sexual acts, in a very matter-of-fact manner. (which also means, you don't watch the film with either your kids or your parents!) Anyway, you can see through her immorality from the things she refuses to do. She's street-smart; she has found her way around mean-machine Mumbai even though she's from UK. And yet you know she's fragile under that cold stare.
The writer dug so deep into this one character, that we know her. And that has to be the beauty of an actor being the writer of the story. Kalki Koechlin knows her character Ruth so well, that she takes no time in convincing us that hers is a story that needs to be heard. It also needs to be heard because of the taboo subject it approaches. A topic that needs to be talked about liberally, but is wrapped under covers making the victim feel guilty. In fact, had Ruth's family talked about it, we wouldn't have had this film. (Funny this, I can't talk about it here, because I'll be giving the movie away :))
About ninety out of the hundred minutes are spent with Ruth, trying to find her father. And yet, you don't get bored. That's because of the bunch of characters that Ruth encounters, tolerates and gets past. Almost as if telling us, that the life lessons she is learning will make her a stronger person. And somehow it will all be worth it. From Chitiappa Gauda (Gulshan Devaiya) the much-needed comic relief in the form of a goon to Prashant, Ruth's drug-dealer boyfriend (Prashant Prakash). Amidst this mix of common but not-so-normal characters played by new actors is the reassuring presence of a father figure and familiar face of Naseeruddin Shah. Of course, the fact that I remember the character as Naseeruddin Shah is a tiny failure. But, not a folly that gets overwhelming.
Sure, there are a couple of times when the repetitiveness begins to get at you. But at that exact time, a character in the film tells off the annoying character. Bottom line is the film engages you throughout. The dialogue is smart and the delivery by one and all is perfect. I also like how the characters unfold. We come to know about them through the things they do and how they interact. I'm sure most directors would have chosen the voiceover route.
This is not the kind of Anurag Kashyap film we are used to. That Girl In Yellow Boots is subtler and calmer. He's not rushing to make his point as if he's not sure he'll get another chance to make it. His angst against the society which wouldn't allow his kind of films to be made has settled a bit. And that has only added to the overall package that the film is.
That doesn't mean it doesn't shock you like a trademark Anurag Kashyap film. The "shock therapy" could be held against him, but there are some facts about vermin in our society that cannot be told without shocking. Even though I guessed the climax, because of one passing line Ruth says somewhere in the middle of the film, the climax shook me a bit. It could be just because I didn't want it to be how Ruth's story ended.
An issue that is close-to-heart, a cold portrayal of the world, and the straightforward as-is style made me uncomfortable, which is a big plus for the film because that was its intention. Yet, unlike other Anurag Kashyap films that I'd urge you to try even if they are not your type, I won't be able to recommend That Girl In Yellow Boots. Because ironically, That Girl In Yellow Boots is not for those who are looking for happy endings.
- meeta, a part of the audience
- Not for kids at all.
- Violence: A couple of fist fights.
- Language: Lots of cuss words
- Nudity & Sexual content: Not shown explicitly on screen, but a masseuse gives a hand-job to her clients.
- Concept: The harshness of truth.
- General Look and Feel: Yellow. Grim and dark. Mumbai.
That Girl In Yellow Boots - Movie Details
- Official Sites: Facebook Wikipedia IMDB
- Producer: Anurag Kashyap
- Director: Anurag Kashyap
- Lead Cast: Kalki Koechlin
- Supporting Cast: Naseeruddin Shah, Gulshan Devaiya, Divya Jagdal, Kartik Krishnan, Kumud Mishra, Prashant Prakash, Shiv Kumar Subramaniam, Pooja Swaroop, Thani
- Story: Anurag Kashyap, Kalki Koechlin
- Screenplay: Anurag Kashyap, Kalki Koechlin
- Dialogues: Anurag Kashyap, Kalki Koechlin
- Cinematography: Rajeev Ravi, Rajeev Ravi
- Editor: Shweta Venkat
- Background Score: Benedict Taylor
- Action Choreography: Shyam Kaushal
- Music Director: Naren Chandavarkar
- Lyrics: Varun Grover
- Costume Designer: Shubhra Gupta
- Art Direction: Babban Adagale , Mrinal Das
- Facebook Page: Link
- Running time: 105 minutes
- Reviewer: meeta
- Language: Hindi
- Country: India
- Genres: Crime, Docu-drama, Murder Mystery
That Girl In Yellow Boots - Trailer
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