Hansal Mehta’s short-film India Tomorrow in the series sponsored by the India Today group is far more evocative and far less artificially upbeat than Imtiaz Ali’s film in the same series which has a sex worker talking sensex to a stock broker during sex.
In Hansal’s film there is only one actor.And no artificial lighting. No false hope. It is Rohith Vemula’s last letter being read out by one of the finest contemporary actors.Mohamad Zeeshan Ayyub who should be doing a lot more work in our films. Hansal Mehta makes telling use of Zeeshan’s expressive face.
The camera holds steady on that face, as the words spill put in a calm unalloyed outpouring of injustices that go back to a time long before Rohith. Zeeshan with his sharp but never shrill diction and evocative face makes every word of Rohith come alive. There are dips and curves in the suicide note….after all, this is not a pretty poem being written for a high-school skit. These are the thoughts of a young man who has decided to end his life .
Rohith in Zeeshan’s voice blames no one for the end of his life.He says he has always had a problem with himself.
Zeeshan spells out the last confessions of a dying man with chilling veracity.Aptly, HansalMehta has shot the film in black-and-white . Colour isn’t the need of the hour. Self-honesty is. Mehta proves his comfort with real-life characters who are casualties of socio-political prejudice. What Mehta’s Shahid did with Rajkummar Rao’s persona is what this short film does with Zeeshan.Don’t miss. It will make you think.