Pokhar Ke Dunu Paar Review: A Lilting Ballad of Love and Small-Town Disillusionment

Rahul Desai

When a Couple Elopes In A Movie, Their Love Becomes a Story

This story is often immortalised by the tragedy that awaits them. The romance is fuelled by a sense of shared rebellion. It shines until there’s someone to defy — society, family, bigotry, history.

Parth Saurabh’s Pokhar Ke Dunu Paar (“Both Sides of The Pond”)

Reveals a young couple struggling to retain the relevance of their love story. Priyanka (Tanaya Khan Jha) and Sumit (Abhinav Jha) are back in the place they eloped from two years ago.

Return To The Hometown

The beauty of Saurabh’s film is that it stays rooted in the emotional ambiguity between remission and relapse; adolescence and adulthood; a pitstop and a return. As in Sairat (2016), the newness of a big city might have sustained the pressure to be together.

Blueprint Of Passive Masculinity

The obligation to justify their love as an act of resistance starts to fade. Slowly but steadily, both Sumit and Priyanka get restored to their default setting; to the individuals they were before they turned plural.

The Dissonance Between the Past and Present Selves

The film does a wonderful job of contextualising the tension between who they are and who they think they should be. It makes most scenes look like a portrait that’s protesting against its own self-contained nature.

The Film, Produced by Achal Mishra

Revolves around the story of a small-town couple who is navigating the constraints imposed by the global pandemic. The film is streaming on Mubi.