ZEE5 Global, the largest OTT platform for South Asian content, has released its first Bangladeshi Original, Mainkar Chipay.
Directed by internationally acclaimed young filmmaker Abrar Athar, the short film is a situational thriller and dark comedy starring Afran Nisho, Sariful Raz and Shamol Mawla.
The edgy thriller sees the three actors share screen space for the first time. The movie showcases Afran Nisho in an entirely new avatar as he drags Sariful Razz, an addict, and Shamol Mawla, a peddler, into a ‘Mainkar Chipay‘ situation.
The film has an entertaining and intense storyline and is being praised by audiences.
Shot in a minimalist format, the film was completed in just four days across four locations during the lockdown, adhering to all the necessary guidelines.
Apart from having an interesting script and extremely quirky characters, the film has been given a unique treatment using camera lenses from the ‘60s to create an indie retro look.
The 50 minute short movie can be watched for free in Bangladesh on the ZEE5 app, and also on http://www.zee5.com.
“All the characters have a very strong presence and it was important to treat the movie with a minimalistic approach to bring out their nuances.
Making this movie within this time frame would have been a challenge if not for the support of the ZEE5 Global team.
Mainkar Chipay is not just an entertaining thriller, it is also a story about not falling prey to addictions that make you weak and lead you into difficult, no-win situations ie. Mainkar Chipay.” said Abrar Athar.
Afran Nisho said: “Mainkar Chipay is a new genre, a dark comedy with a very interesting plot and lots of suspense. All three characters are strongly defined and quite different from one another.
I’ve played this kind of character for the first time, and I enjoyed developing his character and even his look little by little.
I would like to thank ZEE5 Global, The Good Company and the entire team of Mainkar Chipay who have worked extremely hard to create this show which I’m sure the audience would love to watch.”
Sharing his experience Sariful Razz said, “It was my first time working with this team and it was a great experience collaborating with such creative minds.
I’m thrilled that audiences around the world, especially younger audiences, will get to experience this dark yet relatable movie”
“The movie very rightly captures things that can go wrong when one gives in to their addictions. Say no to drugs if you want to avoid getting into a Mainkar Chipay!” said Shamol Mawla.
For a cinematic piece which spans to 50 minutes, the story is quite layered and the fact that it revolves around multiple characters, it is narrated well.
But perhaps this is a reason why one needs to keep eyes glued to the film. It requires patience and focus to ensure that the viewer is following the journeys on this fateful night.
Given that drugs have been reported a lot in the media lately, Mainkar Chipay comes at an opportune moment – where it delves into the stark and foreboding underbelly of the drug trade.
Through the three principal characters, it exhibits the viciousness of the business and how youths are always vulnerable to addiction and getting caught up in this spider web of crime.
Actors Afran Nisho, Sariful Raz and Shamol Mawla are organic in their performances. They come across as ordinary and relatable, which makes the entire ordeal all the more frightening.
The director too manages to shift the atmosphere intensity well. At one point, when characters are playing Teen Patti, the next minute, one points a gun at them.
This filmmaking reminds one of Anurag Kashyap and Tarantino’s style of cinema. But the fact that this work has been shot during lockdown is a great endeavour.
As such, technical aspects are brilliant. Slickly made, characters speaking in asides whilst everything freezes around them gives the narrative an edgy feel.
Interesting how constant pop references are included in the film – not just limited to Bollywood’s Hrithik Roshan but also Hollywood Cohen Brothers.
This gives the interpretation of how peddlers are amongst us the common man and dote upon the things that we do in life.
Overall, Mainkar Chipay is trailblazing work to emerge from Bangladeshi cinema and a good attempt by Abrar Athar – given the fact that this creative piece was shot during lockdown.
Although it requires patience and focus, it is technically wonderful and emphasises the perils of drugs as well as it’s impact on youths.
If it pushes the boundaries as a short, then it will be very fascinating to see more such works evolve through features or series format!
⭐⭐⭐.5 (3.5/5 stars)