Newer stories are being unfurled on the Hindi screen.
In the recent past, Madhur Bhandarkar chose to narrate the war between two soft drink giants in CORPORATE. In GAFLA, debutante director Sameer Hanchate tells the story of one of the biggest scamsters of the stock market and even makes him a hero in the climax of the film.
The problem with GAFLA is that it comes across more as a biography of a scamster than a film that makes a statement against the big sharks of the stock market. Moreover, since the plotline unravels at a lethargic pace, the impact of a couple of well executed sequences also evaporates into thin air.
GAFLA is a story about ordinary people or rather an ordinary young man, Subodh [Vinod Sharawat], in ordinary circumstances. Subodh starts out like any middle class guy, with limited opportunities to survive and go ahead. Perhaps, he has a little bit more drive than the others, more energy and bigger dreams.
Subodh's intentions are good and understandable in terms of ordinary ambitions. Subodh wants to make money, to be successful and enters the stock market. His brilliance makes him successful, but he is at the mercy of big players.
Faced with a choice of either following a secondary career, dominated by big players or becoming a big player himself, he opts for the latter. But, as an outsider, he shouldn't have become the biggest player of all. He didn't know where to stop. He didn't pause to strengthen the base of political and institutional support before rising further. He is inexperienced.
So, when things go wrong, Subodh is crucified for doing the same fraud that everybody was doing.
Director Sameer Hanchate chooses a novel subject for his debut vehicle. But a subject like this has its limitations since it caters to a niche audience, a thin section of moviegoers who'd be interested in watching stock market scams on the big screen.
Hanchate's direction is alright, although his choice of the subject, as pointed above, will find limited takers. GAFLA has been filmed on actual locations and that adds to its authenticity [cinematography: Anshul Chobey].
Vinod Sharawat does a fair job. Shruti Ulfat is commendable. The remaining actors, Brijendra Kala, Purva Parag, Vikram Gokhale, Aditya Lakhia and Shaktee Singh, enact their parts with competence.
On the whole, GAFLA is a dry film that has come virtually unannounced, with as good as zilch pre-release promotion. At the box-office, an also-ran!