The actors - Ashutosh Gaikwad, Abhishek Bharate, Chinmay Jadhav, and Hemal Ingle - in Aditya Sarpotdar's Unaad are open-faced and likable. They express themselves so intensely that they change the atmosphere through their gestures. The actors always drive the plot instead of taking cues from the scenes. They have ingenuous eyes which do not distinguish between class or color. The camera, too, takes pleasure in gazing at this world through a naive perspective. As a result, the grass looks greener, and the sun shines brightly, almost ethereally. Even the water appears fresh, calm, and clean. For a while, we feel we are in paradise. The characters grin and blush while beholding their love interests. Friends make fun of a love letter, a boy goes to a fort with his crush and her parents, and potential lovers exchange glances.
In other words, the characters live in a shell. Bandya (Bharate), Shubham (Gaikwad), and Jameel (Jadhav) are best friends who mainly care about each other and their friendship. For them, life is all about falling in love and hanging out with your buddies. Not much priority is given to exams or colleges. Bandya doesn't care about answers inside the examination hall. He simply takes an additional sheet to write down his feelings for Chaitu (Swara Baal). Shubham, on the other hand, doesn't even bother stepping inside the classroom. And Jameel seems content by remaining in the company of his best friends.
However, we all know that this euphoria cannot be consistent. There will be bumps on the road, and its indication is initially provided in the form of Parag (Avinash Khedekar). As soon as he appears on the screen, your mind tells you he will undoubtedly stir up trouble. And trouble he stirs up. Parag chases Bandya and his friends out of the area by looking down on them and labeling them "boys from the fishing village." But Parag doesn't directly give rise to the main complication. The problem originates from heartbreak, reminding us that love can make you sweet as well as stormy. What happens is that Shubham mistakes Swara's (Ingle) friendship for romance and tries to give her a kiss. She pushes him back and slaps him, which leads us to that scene where he records a video of a couple kissing.
Once the friends are separated, they are hit with reality. They realize there's more to life than intimacy. That their parents, too, have a routine, a part of which they dedicate to their kids. Jameel sees that his father only wants what's better for him, even if that means blaming someone else for a crime. Bandya observes how much hard work her mother puts in to feed him. And Shubham understands that his father wasn't having a blast while staying away from his family. He also undergoes punishment as, at first, his ego is broken through inanition. And since Shubham destroys one life, he later saves many from drowning. Shubham also apologizes to the woman who suffered because of him, but things turn out okay on her side, and you feel as if the movie is being too neat and simplistic.
But ultimately, what makes Unaad a treat is Sarpotdar's capabilities. Every frame is alive, and the images work emotionally. Notice how Shubham apologizes to Swara while she's playing Kabaddi. Not a single word comes out from their lips. Their countenances have a conversation, and you grasp every line. It's one of the most beautiful scenes of the year. I smiled and suddenly felt cathartic. Sarpotdar has made such a lovely film.
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