Newton Movie Review: Rajkummar Rao proves his mettle with another powerful performance
Newton, this peculiar-sounding film is all set to release on 22nd September, 2017. Helmed by Amit V Masurkar, this movie stars Bollywood’s one of the most versatile actor Rajkummar Rao. Let me start with the note that the film holds The film already premiered in the Forum section of the 67th International Film Festival. It is gearing up for its North American premiere at Tribeca Film Festival. Just for the fact that it stars Rajkummar Rao, who has proved his mettle in the industry with films like Shahid, Trapped, Bareilly Ki Barfi, makes this film widely-anticipated among quality cinema lovers. Let’s see if this film succeeds to impress the audience or not.
The story of film revolves around Nutan Kumar aka Newton (Rajkummar Rao). He portrays the role of a Master of Science from a hamlet in India. Working as a government employee, Newton is deployed in Chattishgarh’s naxalites-affected zone for election duty. Amidst the thick forest, only 76 people of the village are enlisted under voter list. People warn him for not conducting the elections in the village, but Newton is adamant. He faces the shock of his life when he sees that the naive village folk don’t even know about the election candidate and has never seen an EVM before.
Low-concept and modestly-scaled films are always hard to sell, but authentic passion and a steady accumulation of detail, sets writers Amit Masurkar and Mayank Tiwari's "Newton" apart.
Set against the backdrop of elections in the world's largest democracy, "Newton" is an exemplary indie drama. It is the portrait of an idealistic man surviving in a society that is corrupt by tradition and lethargy.
The film is projected in the fair and balanced manner, which most of the movies lack in Bollywood. No dramatisation of scene could be scene, which adds to the quality of the film. Newton’s journey in the Naxal-affected jungles is an eye-opener. Initially, his unwariness seems irritable, and borderlines to stupidity, but Rajkummar carries the role with elan. There are moments where you forced to let out a laughter at his idiosyncrasies and conversations with his superiors and colleagues, especially when he’s adamant to contest election by the book during absurd situations. But his sincerity soon grows on you. It raises a question about the democratic procedures adopted in rural areas and its projection by the administration to the media and the world thereby.
Rao is aptly supported by Anjali Patil as his assistant during the election process. She as Malko Neetham, the teacher in a local school and acts as a perfect balance to Rao's naive beliefs. As a local, she gives an appropriate insight into the plight of the oppressed tribals.
Raghubir Yadav and Pankaj Tripathi add some spark to the otherwise staid narrative. Raghubir Yadav as Newton's laid-back colleague, the near retiring Loknath is excellent. He keeps you entertained with his constant complaining of how he is forced to work under strenuous circumstances despite his diabetes and various health issues.
Tension brews with Pankaj Tripathi as Atma Singh the leader of the platoon deployed to provide security for Newton and his team members. He is natural with his patronising tone trying to demoralise Newton. And, it is interesting to watch him become submissive every time he tries to get his way around.
Of the supporting cast, the tribals have their moments of on-screen glory. Standing out among them are the village headman, "Patil" and Mukesh Prajapati as the tribal Shambhoo, who assists Atma Singh.
Not only the performance, there are many things in the movie which leaves the cinema hall as you step out. The background score will be playing in your mind and Swapnil S. Sonawane’s cinematography captures the rickety setup of village in its true colours.
Overall, Newton is something we don’t get to see often in Indian cinema. A tale full of life, interesting, engaging yet educative.
Watch Newton Movie Trailer here:
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