It was destined to end like this. Dil Bechara, the last film of Sushant Singh Rajput, released on July 24 on Disney-Hotstar after cinema halls were shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic. With its trailer getting immense love from the audience, it was expected that the film, too, will be watched by a huge chunk of people as a tribute to the young star who allegedly committed suicide at the age of 34. He leaves behind a legacy of some really good work in TV and films, noteworthy among them being Kai Po Che, MS Dhoni, Sonchiriya, Detective Byomkesh Bakshy, and Shuddh Desi Romance.
Dil Bechara also marks the debut of Sanjana Sanghi, who plays Sushant’s love interest as Kizie Basu. This is also the first film of casting director Mukesh Chhabra. The film opens with the panoramic visuals of the city of Jamshedpur in Jharkhand where the film is set. The story is narrated by Kizie herself who is suffering from throat cancer. Sushant plays Immanuel Rajkumar Junior, alias Manny, who has bone cancer and has lost one leg at a very tender age. As the film proceeds, we also learn that Manny is a die-hard fan of Rajinikanth.
The love story between Kizie and Manny doesn’t have much substance as such but what works for the film and lifts the script are the performances of Sushant and Sanjana. Sushant is in almost every frame of the film and you can’t take eyes off from him till the very end. The infectious smile, the goofy nature and those impeccable dance moves can make anyone teary-eyed because you watch the film knowing that the actor on screen is no longer alive. Scene by scene, the actor proves why he was among the best in an industry that probably did not realise his worth. But the real surprise here is Sanjana Sanghi as Kizie who gets the part and the emotion pat on. In a film that is entirely dedicated to Sushant, Sanjana stands her own. The confidence with which she
plays the emotional scenes is especially noteworthy.
The film is also a glimpse into the lives of cancer patients, their daily struggles, trials and tribulations, how despite knowing that they won’t live for long, they continue to inspire each other and live life to the fullest. There is also a cameo by Saif Ali Khan, who plays an eccentric writer based in Paris. His appearance for a few minutes is actually the philosophy of the entire film. The scene begins quite randomly but ends up making you think and ponder over the meaning of life and its transient nature. Another scene where the protagonists attend their own funeral is heart-wrenching.
In an interview, Sanjana said it is difficult for her and Mukesh to believe that their first film would be Sushant’s last. This is true for the viewer as well. Dil Bechara haunts you long after because the ever-smiling face of Sushant refuses to leave your memory. Watch it to witness 100 minutes of pure, unadulterated emotions of Sushant.
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