Kaushik Mukherjee (Q) | India | 2010 | 85’ | Bengali spoken, English subtitles
Gandu (Asshole) by Kaushik Mukherjee (Q) does for Indian cinema what that adrenalin stab did for Uma Thurman in Pulp Fiction—gives it a jolt! A film director, advertising man and musician, Q brings all his skills to play in this sharp, elegantly shot black-and-white Bengali rap, decidedly adult film. It is about the friendship between Gandu, a no-hoper teen who picks the pocket of the man to whom his mother sells sex, and Ricksha, a cycle rickshaw driver and Bruce Lee fan. As Gandu exorcises his rage in rap music, the two of them float in a world of smack and porn. There are surreal sequences and explicit sex scenes with Rii, even as she plays a delightful ‘cyber-boudi’—a middle class Bengali woman with cybersex fantasies. The Seattle Film Festival jury delighted in the “movie that bowled us over with its kinetic, brash humor and style-hopping dexterity, a portrait of tortured youth that refreshingly pokes fun at adolescent self-centeredness, while simultaneously exploring the anger, despondency and malaise of a generation.” Which beautifully sums it up.