What is the story about?
The film focusses on how Sonu's mother, who dotes on him, tells him bedtime tales that is geared towards correcting his viewpoint towards females.
Told through the prism of the bond between a child and his mother, Natkhat is a deceptive take on patriarchy. Rather, it is about how male children get exposed to misogyny at a very young age, and how this behaviour, instead of being corrected at an early age, is allowed to fester and flourish with the encouragement of elders. Director Shaan Vyas, together with co-writer Annukampa Harsh, crafts a film that constantly oscillates between Sonu's fairy-tale imagination and the horrors of his reality as a misogynist child. And yet, somehow, through the eyes of Sonu's mother, we see the hope that Sonu can change his reality, instead of being stuck in it, and learn to hold space and empathy for the opposite sex. It's a terrific short film that should be watched by everyone.
Vidya Balan is terrific as Sonu's mother, who realizes the danger of her son turning into a misogynist just like the other man in her family, while Sanika Patel is lovely to watch as Sonu. The rest of the cast are also decent.
Music & Other Departments
Sachin Pillai's camerawork and Shweta Venkat Mathew's editing are on point. Karan Gour's background score is heartfelt.
The dinner-table scene, where Sonu casually tells his father and grandfather that they should abduct a "troublesome" lady, is a terrific sequence, simply because of the horror it conveys.
None as such.
Did I enjoy it?
Do I recommend it?
Absolutely. Everyone should watch this.