• Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Film

The ‘Scavenger of Dreams’ review: Powerful drama about trash collectors has top performances

The acclaimed director skilfully combines two accomplished actors with real life people who are living in those conditions and toiling through the daily rigours of a difficult existence

THE SCAVENGER OF DREAMS

By: Asjad Nazir

THE eye-opening drama had its world premiere at the recent Busan International Film Festival. The simple yet effective movie revolves around a couple living in a Kolkata slum.

They work as garbage collectors and sift through rubbish for salvageable items, which they bring home and use to tell stories to their young daughter. We also encounter those who are living in similarly harsh conditions. Not surprisingly, their important work and difficult lives are ignored by more affluent members of society.

The acclaimed director skilfully combines two accomplished actors with real life people who are living in those conditions and toiling through the daily rigours of a difficult existence. The movie succeeds in bringing forth the harsh realities these people live in, but also offers small flickers of hope in the darkness, with genuine love between the couple. There is also a strong camaraderie between all those living through the poverty. He shows how trash taken for granted is valued by others and the dreams they have.

The beating heart of this beautifully shot film is standout performances from the two lead stars. Sudipta Chakraborty and Shardul Bhardwaj completely transform themselves into believable characters. They inject genuine emotions into their respective roles and blend seamlessly in with real life people. The combination of great performance and reality makes this a unique Indian film.

There was scope to explore more of the fantasy element and you are left wanting to find out what happens next to the couple after the film ends.

That doesn’t take away from this being a powerful snapshot of a hidden part of society, which hasn’t really been explored like this, and that makes it an important film. It will make you appreciate any blessings and those who take away the trash that is quickly forgotten.

Eastern Eye

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