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15 Park Avenue
(Scroll down to read the review)

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15 Park Avenue
Reviewer's Summary - Good

Language: English
Year: 2005
Actors: Shabana Azmi, Konkona Sen Sharma, Rahul Bose, Dhritiman Chaterjee, Waheeda Rehman
Written & Directed by: Aparna Sen
Producer: Bipin Vohra
Music: Jyotishka Dasgupta

Fans of Indian movies craving the safe harbor of a quality film have found it in 15 Park Avenue.

By Bollywood standards, 15 Park Avenue (an English film) is a delightful and absorbing movie.

15 Park Avenue's moving story centers around several layers of relationships in a family with a schizophrenic member.

At a fundamental level, it's the relationship between Anu (Shabana Azmi), a professor, and her schizophrenic younger sister Meethi (Konkona Sen Sharma).

But the movie is more than about just Anu and Meethi. It also explores other relationships - between Meethi and her former fiancee Joydeep Roy (Rahul Bose),beteween Anu and her mother (Waheeda Rehman), between Joydeep and his wife Lakshmi (Shefali Shah), between Anu and her colleague Sanjeev (Kanwaljit Singh) and between Shabana and Meethi's psychiatrist Kunal (Dhritiman Chaterjee).

Many years after Joydeep dumps Meethi, he chances upon her in Bhutan during a vacation with his wife and kids. By this time, Meethi has slipped so deep into her delusional world that she doesn't even recognize him. In her strange world, Meethi hears voices of her children although she doesn't have any, talks of a husband she doesn't have and insists on going to 15 Park Avenue, an address that doesn't exist.

While Shabana Azmi is excellent as usual, it's Konkona Sen Sharma, who shines as the schizophrenic in search of an address and a family that does not exist. Incidentally, Konkona is the daughter of the movie's director Aparna Sen.

Rahul Bose, Dhritiman Chaterjee and yesteryear heroine Waheeda Rehman more than do justice to their roles.

Of course, there are jarring notes. The gang-rape of Meethi, while on a reporting assignment seems gratuitous and not well woven into the overall fabric of the film. The dialog delivery of some of the characters is so slow that it's hard to believe flesh and blood humans talk that way.

These deficiencies notwithstanding, the unusual storyline, top notch acting and the deft hand of Aparna Sen make watching 15 Park Avenue an enjoyable experience.

15 Park Avenue brings out very well the trauma to family members of having a delusional schizophrenic in their midst. - Copyright SearchIndia.com.

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