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Clean On AmazonMiniTV : Pretentious & Overambitious!




Clean(Amazon MiniTV)

Starring  Amrita Puri, Aisha Ahmed;  Directed  by  Zoya Parvin

Rating: **

 With the onslaught  of innumerable OTT outlets, there was bound to be  a glut of  options. Even if you are a glutton for content  Clean , a short film about two sisters  digging deep into their mutual  antagonism   to  rationalize  the tension they share in the present tense,  is  way too ambitious  for  its own good.

First, the casting. The two actresses playing the sisters Sabah and  Meher  , seem to have been over-directed in a  script that clearly wants to say more than it is capable of.  The  miniature plot has no room for  an organic narrative expansion. So we hear  all the incidents  in the stormy past,   from the  sisters bickering,   rather than  seeing  what  happened.

Going by the  velocity  of  the  verbosity  , why not a radio play? The screenplay lacks  a visual  quality. The  actors seem  to focus more on the words that they have  spit out at one another rather than  the emotions underlining them.We hear  of devastating emotional  crises in the past—a woman is  betrayed by her lover,  a child from a broken relationship is adopted  by  the sister   of  the  betrayed woman,a marriage struggles to survive…all of this, plus more  in  less than  20 minutes? Value for  money?

You have  to be kidding! In their desperate  bid to outrun the  narrative   the  performances  by the two  lead actresses  are overwrought and over-punctuated  especially Amrita  Puri who struggles  to give  a shape to her  character’s  messy  outpourings. But everything seems to go wrong: from the way the sister’s chain of  recriminations is triggered off to the  venue for the  tirade.

Who  talks  about  adoption rights and  parenting wrongs  on the stairs  of a hospital where a loved  one  is dying? This is a  short film with too much to say in too little time , and lacking the  coherent voice to say  it all in a lucid  tumble.

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