Panhala: Film Review- A not-so-riveting ride

Directed by Nagesh Bhosle, who is known for his negative roles on the telly, Panhala is a film about two couples who come to Panhala for a weekend getaway. Both couples have their own sets of problems. One couple is played by Makrand Deshpande and Samidha Guru. Makrand’s character, Ajay, was once an award-winning photographer, but now watches the house and does the chores for his wife. His wife, Sneha, played by Samidha Guru, is an advertising executive, who has money, fame and power. She dominates her husband, who relies on her for work. 

The other couple in Panhala are Swastik and Madhavi, played by Sangram Salvi and Amruta Sant, who are a middle-class couple. Sangram does not respect his wife, and mentally abuses her, from time to time. It also doesn’t help that Amruta is pregnant. They come to Panhala for some much-needed peace and quiet, away from their chaotic lives. 
Director Nagesh Bhosle does a good job with Panhala, in terms of visuals and the technical aspects, but where Panhala fumbles a little is the plot. 
The story sees the two couples meet an ‘intuitive’ guide, called Balkrishna (played by Nagesh Bhosle), who seems to have a knack for telling stories. He takes them through the history of Panhala, and teaches them one thing – in order to move forward, one must respect the past. He is adept at identifying how people think, and is also an amateur psychologist. The couples take a long tour with him, finding out more about themselves and each other. There is quite a bit of bickering between the couples, and while this is bearable for a bit, it leaves you a little tired in your seat towards the end. 
As a director, Nagesh Bhosle must be commended for his vision. Cinematographer Amarendra Bhosle also puts up a good show, with interesting angles and wide shots. However, where Panhala ultimately falls flat, is the story. With a weak plot and a couple of hammy twists towards the end, the film doesn’t do justice to its actors. Makrand Deshpande plays his role well, as do Sangram Salvi and Amruta Sant. However, their performances alone cannot make Panhala a success. 
Why Should You Watch this Film?
Catch Panhala over the weekend for a change, and Makrand Deshpande‘s performance. 

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