Naya Pata – Film Review: A man’s incessant quest for identity

In search of new beginnings, we leave behind our past and move on. New place, new people and a new address. But, how successful are we in this hunt for a new identity? Or, are we simply getting more lost? Pawan K. Shrivastava‘s Naya Pata deals with a subject –  identity crisis – which many of us may feel we are already well-aware of. But, surprisingly, Naya Pata has new things to say. It bares the hard facts of migration and its psychological impact upon a person.

The bilingual (Bhojpuri and Hindi) film, Naya Pata follows the story of Ram Swarath Dubey (Abhishek Sharma). A migrant from Bihar who moves to Delhi in hope of a better future. The film focuses on the growing anguish and anxiety of Swarath Dubey, as he struggles to adjust in the fast-paced city life. After 25 years, he moves back to his village in search of warm comfort, but he is once again greeted with loneliness and anonymity.

The clever cinematography by Saket Saurabh sets in the pace of the movie. Each shot is crafted with visual poetry. There is a symbolic placement of objects which evokes the lost sense of belonging. The characters in the film are perfectly molded. The actors are natural. Yashwardhan Singh who plays the character of the young Ram Swarath Dubey, is brilliant. Abhishek Sharma also gives a stellar performance. The music by Viral Pandey is poignant and richly textured. It blends in with the story.

Although, the film successfully delves into a complex issue, there are minor flaws in it. The way the story develops might test the audience’s patience. Certain scenes look quite abrupt, the climax seemed incomplete and could have been better. Yet, Shrivastava did a splendid job.

When it comes to films on migration, we tend to expect a lot of violence or fights. But, Naya Pata is void of such extremities. Pawan Shrivastava delivered a ruminative film on a continuous quest of a person for his identity.

Why should you watch the film?

A Bhojpuri film with a difference. Leaving aside all the raucous elements usually seen in any Bhojpuri film, Naya Pata is a sincere effort. It captures the grim reality of migration. With the crowd going crazy over a certain "slapstick comedy", Naya Pata is a film which is will definitely give you some relief. Sense over nonsense, we sure need that.

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