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Manto – Film Review

Manto, still a censored issue.

Writer and director, Nandita Das, has very poetically depicted Sadat Hassan Manto as a personality and his writings side-by-side in her fim ‘Manto’.

Nawazuddin Siddiqui plays the protagonist in such comfort that the audience could criticize him of being otherwise.

‘Manto’ is not only a biopic of an Urdu writer who has always patronized the lives of prostitutes and women then, but also a serious screenplay that would really make India bleed and regret of the Partition. Characters in the film were all justified and sketched exactly to the amount required.

The role of Manto’s wife couldn’t have been better, imagined rather than Rasika Dugal.

Manto, did focus on the positions which literally screams that the Partition of India was vestigial. The movie speaks about the ‘freedom of expression’ , being a right that can be manipulated by legal authorities only.

The movie even depicts stories of the after effects of Partition that were severely devastating. Nandita Das has very creatively coined stories of Sadat in chronological order with his life and the political surrounding.

The intermission of the movie comes with a very heartfelt moment between two friends where a Hindu pronounce ‘Long live Pakistan’ and a to-be-Pakistani showing immense love for  Bharat.

The movie was beautifully designed with a sensitive background score by Zakir Hussain.

Though Manto has been a fine piece of Indian cinema, it too is evident, that the movie could not escape scenes being humanely censored.

The brutality of Censorship was very prominent and was eye-irritating to an extent. Though the Indian audience is tolerant to the given circumstance, the censor board is still a juvenile, to experience a non-adulterated movie as, ‘Manto’.

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