Movie: Life Goes On

Cast: Sharmila Tagore, Girish Karnad, Om Puri, Soha Ali Khan

Director: Sangeeta Dutta

Jagran Rating:  Good

Story line:  ‘Life Goes On’ is an emotional tale of a migrant Bengali community, trying to rescue their identity at the onslaught of great racial and religious divide.

The story of  ‘Life goes on’ starring Sharmila Tagore, Girish Karnad, Om Puri and Soha Ali Khan, revolves around a typical Bengali family where Girish plays the role of a doctor.

After the sudden death of his wife (Sharmila Tagore) Girish Karnad, Sharmila’s lover Om Puri and daughters, Dia (Soha Ali Khan), Tulika and Lolita are forced to re-establish the family equilibrium and define their roles in a fast changing   world where cultures are clashing. Each and every one finds sea changes in their life.

In this movie Girish Karnad is trying his best to hold on to the cultural and moral values of his family in Britain. But in his heart he carries the wounds of his wife’s death; communal violence and prejudices. He is shocked when he gets to know that his youngest daughter loves a Muslim doctor.

The word ‘Muslim’ reminds him of traumatic past which made him lose everything during partition. Things become more complicated when he gets to know that one of his daughters is a lesbian. Will the father be able to support his family as always? Only the climax of the movie can give you the answers.

Thumbs up:  Director Sangeeta Dutta tries to paint a sensitive portrait of a family in instability. The use of Rabindrath Tagore’s poetry coupled with the grace of Sharmila Tagore as the cultured, feminine Bengali house-wife transforms the film into an artistic experience. Girish Karnad does justice to the role of a lonely father.

Thumbs down:  Om Puri's ambiguity as friend and rival-in-love adds a tang to the drama. Sadly, Sharmila remains somewhat of a silhouette, always doing something with her pots, plants and poetry. We would have definitely liked to see more of her enigmatic relationship with Om Puri.