Which is of greater importance – the cozy, familiar world of reality or the dizzying, intoxicating world of dreams? Which has higher stakes? Which would you rather lose? During times when poor Hindi remakes have managed to give the south a bad reputation, Lucia (Pawan Kumar, 2013), a Kannada film with English subtitles, notable for its non traditional crowd funding, is a treat to watch.
Nikki is our average small-town boy, who ventures into the big city. He lives in a shack, in a rundown street and works as the torch-bearing usher at his uncle’s (Shankranna) old, crumbling talkies. He is the good-natured, happy-go-lucky person who breezes his way into your hearts. You are soon laughing at his silly pranks, sympathizing with his troubles and rooting for him as he woos his lady love (Swetha), a waitress at the pizza outlet. Nikki, like most of us, also simultaneously inhabits the grand world of his dreams; where he can ‘choose’ to be what he likes. There he is a successful (all-in-one) movie star. He is always in the spotlight, mobbed by throngs of fans and the press, pursued by extortionists; as you cheer along. But as the movie progresses, his dreams begin to outweigh reality and his life, apparently simple; is now in doldrums. The line between the two blurs and his 2 worlds are about to collide and destroy each other. Can Nikki survive this tug-of-war with his own-self?
This film excels in every department. The presentation and treatment of the story by the director, is commendable. The screenplay keeps you at the edge of your seats, as you try to comprehend the roller coaster journey of the protagonist’s life. The pace of the movie slackens in between, burdened with too many songs; but your patience will be rewarded as the movie races to a thrilling finish. The cast comprises of relatively fresh faces, all of them delivering superlative performances. Made on a small budget, it proves that a movie sans a popular cast, foreign locales can still capture a large audience; which in turn lends credibility to the idea of crowd-funded cinema. Lucia has surpassed the ‘Superhit’ phase to become a milestone in the history of Kannada movies. Go experience this movie and allow it to teach you a lesson or two, while you get entertained.
Written by Vidya Bhandarkar 🙂