Sex, Lies, and Videotape

408a3137a75abbd9e17969f67c596641-2KALYUG. Director: Mohit Suri. Players: Kunal Khemu, Amrita Singh, Smily Suri, Deepal Shaw, Emran Hasmi. DVD (UTV).

Mahesh Bhatt’s films falls into one of two molds. They are either fluff: escapist, box-office friendly, but fluff nonetheless (Aashique, Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin, Raaz); or they explore uncharted, often taboo topics plucked right out of contemporary headlines. In Aisa Kyon Hota Hai (HIV), Zakhm (out-of-wedlock birth, inter-faith romance), Tamanna (transgender sexuality), and Daddy (parental estrangement) Bhatt is unafraid to tell it like it is. Falling squarely in the latter camp, Bhatt-produced Kalyug has his shrewd social microscope focusing on the dark side of an insatiably voyeuristic cyber-obsessed culture’s entirely plausible ability to destroy innocent lives with a mere keyboard click.

A newlywed couple (newcomers Khemu and Suri) find themselves tangled in a Kafkaesque nightmare after learning that a secret video of their honeymoon bliss at a remote cottage is being offered on a pay-per-view porn website. To settle a score with operators of the site, and against all odds, Khemu’s guilt-ridden young husband scours far and wide, and eventually goes to Switzerland.

This first-rate, engrossing tale of sex, lies, and videotape gets a wonderful boost from newcomer Khemu’s intense delivery. The plot also seamlessly taps into the plight of Hindu refugees from Kashmir, the Europe-based porn and sex trade specializing in exploitation of Indian women (and some men), and a controlling mother’s inability to rein in a rebel-with-a-cause gay daughter. Singh’s noteworthy control-freak matriarch will no doubt raise eyebrows.

The high-flying UTV label comes clean with a remarkable 3-disc DVD that features separate discs for the feature, a “making-of” cover disc, and one with interviews with the principals. Small-budgeted, but far from small-minded, Kalyug is a jolt of realism in a sea of make-believe.

—Aniruddh Chawda

You May Like This

500 Female-Led Movies to Be Showcased at 2021 Kalakari Film Festival

Throughout the most recent years, discussions about equality have pervaded the Indian film industry. The Kalakari Film Festival is taking steps towards getting

IC’s Exclusive Interview With Lara Dutta On Her New Film ‘Bell Bottom’

  Recently, I interviewed Lara Dutta on her role as Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in

Nayattu: Cops Vs. Cops

It's a small world in director Martin Prakkat’s latest Malayalam movie Nayattu, set in a town in Kerala. One of the three principal characters, the rookie cop

Sign-up and join our newsletter today!

* indicates required