Jal is a Hindi film which is set in the Rann of Kutch, India about an overconfident water diviner named Bakka, who tries to solve the drought problems in his village, but faces unforeseen circumstances when he tries to help a female ornithologist save flamingos. Wikipedia
Jal is a simple story about human emotions and it is that simplicity which touches your heart. It is this rare quality that may get Jal, a film which did not generate too much buzz prior to its release this Friday, its niche audience.Girish showcases love, lust and thirst in a simply and beautifully woven story. If simple human emotions are your fill, you should certainly watch Jal.
Though Jal's story is earthbound, it takes occasional flight, like a good, compelling dastan. But the film has an intermittently sparse and jam-packed screenplay and it tells its story in a style that’s a mix of documentary and theatre -- an affected, stylised narrative borrowing both form and spirit from various folk dance traditions. The film is marred by an uneven screenplay that rises and dips a lot initially. But once the story picks up, after interval, it's a delight to watch Purab Kohli.
Jal is a work of remarkable resonance. The sheer visual mastery of Malik's directorial debut takes your breath away. The sheer velocity and spatial harmony of the intrinsically disturbed desertscape, the incredibly nuanced sound design and the powerhouse performances by actors who forget the camera is watching them, make this a work whipped into eternity by vast stretches of unchained artistry.
'Jal' captures the bare beauty of the golden cracked earth and its tortuous tapestry in artfully mounted frames (cinematography: Sunita Radia). It's a picture-perfect album with stark sights and parched souls. The story is stirring, handling several complex issues in the same breath, and yes, that does leave us a bit thirsty. It also needs a better edit. There are over-dramatized scenes (Bakka dragged across the desert) to enhance visual impact, but the solid performances and soundtrack make up for it.
Jal is a magnificently shot film but doesn’t quite imbibe the needful spirit. Though Purab Kohli proves his flair as an actor, the film tries its hand at being a Shakespearan Tragedy where a hero is felicitated posthumously. Unfortunately, despite the fantastic cinematography the lack of soul doesn’t quite make this an impressive fare.
Jal was much loved in the film festival circuit. It's great that films like this one get to live their glory on various movie screens. Now, it's up to you really to watch, and judge.
JAL makes a rock-solid impact. It's poignant and powerful and I suggest, you take time out to watch this truly gripping fare.
The plot is quite muddled – It is not clear if the film is meant to be a personal story of Bakka,his love life, water crisis in Kutch or environmental protection. Even though the intentions were right, the execution leaves a lot to be desired.
JAL is a classic example of how to waste a wonderful concept. JAL is a visual delight. The dry, arid land is captured well. So also is the basic premise. But what lacks punch are the two Indian officials whose character graph makes no sense. Ditto the 'bland acting' of the gora who behaves like a five-year-old who just had a fight with his friend.
...a beautiful-looking but largely unwatchable film, one that aspires to be a work of art but fails in some of the most basic aspects of filmmaking.
Jal could've worked phenomenally well had the art of filmmaking merged well with the story of it. However, with ample stress on beautifying the film than weaving a good plot around it, Jal ends up being an ambitious experiment that goes wrong.
I was definitely expecting a lot more from this movie. But unfortunately, it doesn’t take much time for a good film to turn sour.
All in all Jal is a stunning looking movie that fails spectacularly at telling an engaging story!
So what you get in the end is a gorgeous looking, muddled film that leaves you unmoved. But isn't that the most important thing?
The story is tropical and interesting; the execution of screenplay, not so much. Jal is constructed as the kind of expansive cinema that begged to be shot on pure film. Rather unfortunate, because Jal ends up as the kind of film that begged to be pure unadulterated cinema.
Audience Reviews for Jal
Watched #Jal, water. Very good first half with good content. Second half is muddled?????? A good concept is wasted. The movie has traveled to various festivals, may be for its first half focus on the reality of how Flamingoes are dying in the Rann of Kutch due to lack of fresh water but the fictional second half exaggerates the lust of Bakka who survives 10 days on love, without food n WATER n comes out fresh n smiling. May be a WATER_GOD can pull a stunt like that along with his newly married wife. Sadly this water God husband can't fetch her enough water to drink when they both are thrown out of the village and she dies with a baby in her womb....
One thing for sure...the Kutch visuals in the first half are too good. More inviting than the Gujarat tourism ads.. The Rann of Kutch is worth a visit...and I will go for sure. — feeling my parched throat after Rann of Kutch visuals..