Remember Yaadein? It was a Sunil Dutt movie with just one character - Sunil Dutt himself. The film was made after the sad demise of Nargis Dutt, and was a tribute to her memories. There was only one problem though - even an actor of the stature of Sunil Dutt could not really carry a movie on his shoulders alone for 3 hours.
Therefore, the achievement of The Great Indian Butterfly is amazing by any standards. Just 2 characters. 90 minutes. And you are spell bound every single minute. No thumkas, no item numbers and no comedy dialogues. And yet, 3 minutes into the film, you shut down everything else, forget the popcorn, and just focus on the screen. Show me another film that can do that in recent times.
Technical - The cinematography is awesome. Places close to Mumbai and yet scenic. The Mumbai - Goa highway has not looked this pretty, not even in Bombay to Goa. Lighting again needs special mention because natural and artificial light both has been used to create the desired effect each time.. distincly enough for one to sit up and notice how well light is being used. Very little Art Direction, but all of it blends very well with the film. Only one thing - I am not sure if the story needed a gorgeous Sandhya Mridul to look so haggard. A little good makeup on her would really have helped.
The acting has already been talked about. It takes a lot to hold interest for 90 minutes. With the same "look" on both characters. Of all the things that are remarkable about the film, performance in acting is completely, absolutely the most notable.
The story is not new, neither is the theme. Urban couples losing "it" and each other, looking to reunite and find solace. But the treatment.. aah! The treatment! This is one of those films that one must watch in one's growing years.. and if one is a student of filmcraft, then this film is a textbook.
One line review: 5 stars. Must watch.
PS: Here is a writeup by the director. I quite enjoyed reading it.