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Daman Review

Daman
Chinmayi Sirsi / fullhyd.com
EDITOR RATING
5.0
Performances
Script
Music/Soundtrack
Visuals
NA
NA
NA
NA
Suggestions
Can watch again
NA
Good for kids
NA
Good for dates
NA
Wait to rent it
NA
Man rapes wife. Wife runs away. Man finds wife. Wife kills man. Moral of the story: if you are a victim of marital rape, run away, or better still, kill your husband. All other roads lead to zilch.

Produced by the Ministry For Health And Family Welfare, directed by Kalpana Lajmi and featuring a national award-winning performance by Raveena Tandon, Daman was a much-awaited movie in some circles, and a curiosity in many. But a mediocre social drama with careless direction and zero entertainment value is what you get. So here's another moral of this story: when you walk into a theater, leave your expectations behind.

Durga (Raveena Tandon), a poor village girl, is married off to Sanjoy (Shivaji Shinde), the son of a reasonably wealthy family. Sanjoy, a cruel, crude and promiscuous man, mistreats her, constantly degrades her and rapes her. Angry, afraid and hurt, Durga turns to her brother-in-law Sunil (Sanjay Suri) for support and sympathy. Love blossoms in the unlikeliest of relationships, but both are held back by social constraints.

Years go by without Durga's wrath, but things threaten his world when Sanjoy threatens to marry their 12-year old daughter Deepa to a middle-aged alcoholic. Then one night in a drunken stupor he kills Sunil, and Durga decides that's it. She runs. And lands up in Guwahati, in the shelter of a kind woman with no children of her own. But Sanjoy finds them, and pays for it.

None of the characters is credible, least of all Sanjoy, who seems mentally ill at times, downright cruel at others. We get no background, no orientation on any of people involved, and no explanations are given about why things are the way they are. Sanjoy's dysfunctional family has no real characterization and is just an excuse for a background. Durga seems to have popped up out of nowhere.

And if that were not enough, there's a police inspector mouthing women's lib dialogues, as if, somewhere along the line, Lajmi suddenly felt guilty about not having enough messages for women.

Raveena Tandon lives her role, and does so with dignity. But an Oscar-winning performance it is not. Both Shaan and Raima Sen make utter fools of themselves, and you are left wondering if the director was on vacation during their stint. The music too is a disappointment. The haunting song Gum Sum Gum Sum by Bhupen Hazarika is a beautiful number, and Hey Ram Ram is okay, but none of the other songs deserves mention. Don't expect anything in the class of Rudaali.

Whatever happened to entertainment, and whoever said social dramas need not be entertaining? To make things worse, Lajmi gives us a juvenile song between Shaan and Raima. Puleeze! There are no nice or warm moments in the movie, nothing that's even mildly pleasing.

It's a shame that Daman turned out the way it did. What could have been an important and interesting movie puts up a disappointing show. Consumed by symbols and symbolism, Lajmi fails to move you into empathy or understanding, and leaves you bored and irritated. It's a shame.
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DAMAN SNAPSHOT
Daman (hindi) reviews
USER RATING
3.7
7 USERS
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Rating is quick and easy - try it!
  • Cast
    Raveena Tandon, Sayaji Shinde, Sanjay Suri, Raima Sen
    1 user says this is wrong.
  • Director
    Kalpana Lajmi
    1 user says this is wrong.
  • Theatres
    Not screening currently in any theatres in Hyderabad.
    1 user says this is wrong.
DAMAN USER REVIEWS
1 - 2 OF 2 COMMENTS
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USER RATING
3.7
7 USERS
Performances
Script
Music/Soundtrack
Visuals
NA
NA
NA
NA
Can watch again - NA
Good for kids - NA
Good for dates - NA
Wait to rent it - NA
Kulbir Singh on 13th May 2001, 11:07am | Permalink
the moral of the story is that when you'r giving y'r daughter in marriage to somebody, check out the complete details of that guy; don't go for wealth ect..else you will end up y'r durga with some fanatic - sanjoy.
RATING
2
Ray on 12th May 2001, 12:59pm | Permalink
though the technicalities of movie making r obscure to me common sense is handy thankfully...though i score daman low on the impact the movie had on me due to its bad storytelling, i ask the reviewer to suggest another way out for DURGA when sanjay was so near to taking her back to hell and she lacking any means to protest?
RATING
2
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