Subha J Rao
Sindhu Sreenivasa Murthy Anchors A Nostalgia Trip
Aachar & Co was marketed as a nostalgia trip, and it is that in many ways, but what stands out most is the story of a giggly, entitled Suma (essayed by the director, Sindhu Sreenivasa Murthy, herself) who becomes a woman of reasonable substance.
A Simple, Homely Story
Government engineer Madhusudhan Aachar (a suitably grim Ashok) and his wife Savithri (Sudha Belavadi) have 10 children, three boys and seven girls. The boys are supposed to become engineers and the girls good housewives (the film is set in the 60s). The children wish different things, though.
Limited Elements To Evoke Nostalgia
There’s Bangalore of yore in the form of tree-lined roads, individual homes with gardens and small gates, and small touches like simple weddings and bridal makeup and laddoos for the feast, and Kammanahalli being considered the outskirts, but not much else to trigger nostalgia. The film could have worked in any era.
The Simple Story Needed More Weight
As a story, Aachar & Co is simple, narrated through the events taking place in a house and its people. But, where it falters is in the tone. Deaths happen and you don’t feel a thing. There’s success and you don’t feel a thing. Somewhere, the emotional connection is missing. You care for Suma because of her presence and not really because of the writing.
Technical Values Complement The Story
Music by Bindumalaini is precious, adding so much value while not intruding. The Bangalore Suprabatham song and the pickle song, in particular, linger. Cinematography by Abhimanyu Sadanandan reflects a gentleness with which life moves. Inchara Suresh’s costumes — half-saris, soft silks, printed silks — are lovely.