The Twist ★★★

A sweet short of grandma-grandson bonding over dancing 60s Twist!

The Twist in the name refers to the rock and roll dancing style. It is the story of a school boy Shlok who loves dancing. His grand-mother was a renowned dancer of her times. She is not able to walk anymore because of fear. Shlok gets invited to perform in annual function by Nadia who wants him as her dancing partner. Sholk is now under immense pressure because he also has hots for her. The pressure is too much for him. The sweet short film explores if and how, the grandma-grandson duo overcome their fears through The Twist!

The film starts at a low-key note but gets the pace quickly. The bonding of the Shlok with his grandmother is worth a watch. The performances are all very good. The nicety is also in details. The opening scene where Gayatri meets with Ritvik has just the right background chaotic noises as it would be in a school. They have acted not only with their faces but through their body languages. Kudos to the young actors and best wishes for the performance!

Now is the time for negatives. It is really tough for us to find negatives in such shorts which are made with so much heart into it, but then that’s the critics’ job, ain’t it? Well, the story is just too predictable. You can simply guess every next ‘twist’ in The Twist. While this treatment makes the story easy on the audience, it also steals the wow factor completely. We also didn’t like the scene of the rehearsals, which looks made-up and synthetic. We at AglaPlay are big fan of authenticity and the rehearsal scenes is borderline Bollywood.

Overall it is worth a watch and a very sweet short film. Do let us know of your feeling by clicking thumbs icon below.

AglaPlay Verdict: Worth a watch
AglaPlay Rating: 3.0/5
Language: Hindi / English
Duration: ~13 minutes
Writer:  Omkar Gokhale 
Director: Suraj Parasnis
Cast: Ritvik Sahore (Shlok),
Sushma Deshpande (Grandma),
Gayatri Salkar(Nadia) & 
Twist: a sweet short of grandma-grandson bonding over dancing

Golden Crush ★★★½

A sweet comedy. A young guy is scared out of his wits as his father catches him smoking cigarette.

The title refers to the last few drags from a cigarette. Aptly named, the short film involves a young guy who get caught smoking by his father. The young college goer is terrified and breaks into tears as his father probes him. The two talk and mutually come to some decisions which may change both their lives for good.

The short film is really done well with very mature and clever writing. Kudos to Omkar Gokhale for this beautiful script and the unexpected twist in the end.

Father-son dialogue is the soul of the short film. It is very normal to the fathers and sons to drink and smoke, but not in front of each other. People sometimes go to extents to hide it from their families, as if there is something gravely wrong about the act. I hereby want to clarify that I am not praising the smoking and drinking. It is just that when you have to hiding acts which you love to do, from the people you love may take its toll on one’s happiness and even, their confidence. Golden Crush attempts to find another way out of this conundrum through the conversation between the central characters.

For negatives, there is nothing major. Few viewers might have challenge with Marathi, but the subtitles provided are perfect. you do not need to depend on YouTube generated ‘Closed Captions’, which are just irritating at times… ugh! If I go all out for fault-fidning, photography is a division which could have been a little better, but nothing that is deal-breaking.

Overall, a must watch! I believe that ‘Golden Crush‘ is a very good attempt and all age groups will enjoy it. However with the smoking involved, we are not tagging this one under ‘Young Audience Friendly’.

AglaPlay Verdict: A must watch
AglaPlay Rating: 3.5/5
Language: Marathi with English Subtitles
Duration: ~9 minutes
Writer:  Omkar Gokhale 
Director: Suraj Parasnis
Cast: Sandesh Kulkarni,
Shivraj Waichal & 
Golden Crush: A sweet Marathi Short

The Guest ★★★

A thriller that tells story of a young man asking help from an old lady on a dark lonely night…

The protagonist’s car breaks down in midst of the mountains. The poor guy walks miles to find a town or a mechanic but to no avail. Finally he knocks at a house and the landlady answers.

The camera work is good. Note that I can be biased here. I always like seeing the mountains. I am an avid trekker (till before Covid-19 hit). Valleys with small village houses and greenery around soothes me. It is something with the greenery of the plants, or the vastness of open space, and the smell of fresh air of the mountains or even hills which have this magical effect on me. Many of us, including me have to stay in the cities for earning our bread, but it is always like mountains calling out to me. Here, I will also praise the genuineness in simplicity of the portrayal of a small town home with an outhouse changed to godown – the single flickering bulb, the simple bed with mattress. The simplicity is the beauty of camerawork here.

To really enjoy the short film to its fullest, I will request you to put your feet in the protagonist’s shoes. Imagine that your car has broken down and you are stuck in the situation with no shops or person around. What will you do? How will you manage? The climax will hit you and it will hit you hard if you follow this small advice of ours!

Negative is that there is nothing in the movie. The landlady herself appears after more than half of the movie is passed. The movie could have been half its size, may be, and still would have delivered similar impact.

However, it is a must watch for the end. As you know from above, you can skip first half of the movie without any impact on your experience!

AglaPlay Verdict: A must watch for its end
AglaPlay Rating: 3.0/5
Language: Hindi
Duration: ~8 minutes
Writer:  Parveez Sheikh 
Director: Ayappa K. M.
Cast: Avinash Tiwari (Stranger),
Davinder Madan (Landlady) & 
The Guest: Mediocre short with great ending

Bin Bulaaye ★★½

Award winning short about a daughter longing for her father amidst the challenges that life throws at her.

The short film is about a young girl who is living in the house of her father. Her father, seemingly a poet, is no more but his memories remain through his words and more. The house is visited by a cook and, the unannounced guests who keep coming over to the place. The story is told through interactions of these characters and the poetic words, which are narrated by Naseeruddin Shah.

Let me spill out one spoiler now itself. Naseeruddin Shah is only present as the voice-over. Sorry, but as you will see, it was not really a spoiler. The narration of Naseerudin Shah is very soothing and done well. I have seen him performing without mics. Mr Shah moves the audience merely with the oratory skills, the acting comes second.

Pardon me, I deviated. Coming to movie at hand, the best part is its simplicity. There is nothing complex about the inter-relations or the treatment. No scene has been exaggerated or overloaded with heavy musics and paraphernalia. It is a simple life, flowing as it does with its own crests and troughs. That actually also becomes its negative, though. Please read on.

The film is too simplistic with nothing much to offer to the audience. The end seems out of place from the rest of the story. The short film was awarded by MAMI awards 2019 (Mumbai Academy of Moving Images) which may be because of the effect of the star-cast. But I will be able to comment on that only after watching other nominations.

Overall, it is nothing great and you may skip this one.

AglaPlay Verdict: Average
AglaPlay Rating: 2.5/5
Language: Hindi/English
Duration: ~19 minutes
Writer: Debasmita Dasgupta, 
Anshul Tiwari (based on short story
written by Madhumita Dasgupta)
Director:  Anshul Tiwari
Cast: Ira Dubey (protagonist),
Jhuma Biswas (maid),
Arfi Lamba,
Dilshad Patel &
Naseerudin Shah (Voice over / Poet-Father)

Watch now!

Kriti ★★★½

Manoj Vajpayee and Radhika Apte starrer psychological thriller which keeps audience on edge.

Synopsis: Sapan is schizophrenic. He pays regular visits to her psychiatrist, who is trying to help Sapan both in the capacity of a doctor and a friend. Kriti is Sapan’s live-in partner. She is a mystery to the psychiatrist, and also to Sapan. Kirit has her own psychological disorders, and suffers severely from agoraphobia. The film unfolds the dark secrets and explores morbid twists of psychological issues among the trio.

What works: The film Kriti is a thoroughly enjoyable thriller. The film manages to keep audience on the hook about what would happen next. The short film is also a proof that one doesn’t need full feature length for creating great stories. An experienced and talented star-cast also helps. The performances are good. Manoj Vajpayee particularly has delivered a splendid schizophrenic Sapan. Neha Sharma, Radhika Apte and Manu Rishi all fit the role well.

Negatives: Nothing from the film per se, except that it may be dark and unsettling for those who do not like the genre. Period. However…

One negative for me was the ‘inspiration’ Writer-Director-Prodcuer Sirish Kunder takes from the original Bob without giving due credit to original source material. Seemingly, the film is inspired from Nepalese short film Bob. Sirish has also vocally pretested against these allegations. To be fair, Kriti goes much farther in the story-line and the twists; but I see some merit in the plagiarism claims. Some of the scenes, the theme, and especially the doctor-patient discussions seem copied-pasted from Bob. Such attempts demotivate the hard working lower budget counterparts and would be highly detrimental for further expanse of the creative works. One relevant article is here.

AglaPlay Verdict: A good psychological thriller
AglaPlay Rating: 3.5/5
Language: Hindi
Duration: ~17 minutes
Writer: Sirish Kunder
Director:  Sirish Kunder
Cast: Manoj Vajpayee (Sapan),
Radhika Apte (Psychiatrist),
Neha Sharma (Kriti) &

Watch now!