The directorial debut of actress Rekha Thapa and debut of disabled actor Sudarshan Gautam as an actor, ‘Himmatwali‘ was released on Fulpati, at the time of the biggest festival of Nepal, Dashain.
The movie is produced by Rekha’s mother Saraswati Thapa and is released under Rekha Films banner. The movie features Rekha Thapa and Sudarshan Gautam in lead roles. Other actors include Abhaya Chand and Puskar Bhatta. The movie features the action of Chandra Pant, music of Basanta Sapkota and Tanka Budhathoki, cinematography of Ramsharan Upreti and choreography of Basanta Shrestha and Kamal Rai.
The release on Wednesday, against the usual practice of releasing new Nepali movie on Fridays, created a lot of controversies. Rekha ignored the government order. As a result Rekha and her production company Rekha Films were suspended from the Film Producers Association.
The movie was initially directed by Shyam Bhattarai. After few days of shooting, Rekha kicked out of the team and took over the direction responsibility herself. She accused the director of ‘Lanka‘, a hit movie, incompetent and irresponsible person. In addition to directing, acting and producing, Rekha is also named the writer of the movie. Before the incident, Rekha used to call Shyam her big brother and she had also celebrated Bhai Tika with him. When she was in the USA, she also conveyed Shyam Bhattarai’s message to his ex-wife Ranjana Sharma. Although Shayam and Rekha have patched up now, the relationship hasn’t improved. In a report, Chhabi Raj Ojha is planning to assign Shyam Bhattarai to direct ‘Lanka’ sequence ‘Lanka 2’.
The relationship between Rekha and Sudarshan has also been a topic of talk in the Nepali film industry. Sudarshan, a father of a child, in Canada has told that he has already divorced and both Rekha and Sudarshan haven’t denied the possibility of marriage.
Satya (Sudarshan Gautam) is hiding in a jungle in Kailali. He is hiding from the US government after releasing secret information in his new portal. He is living with a well armed security guard. He is a most wanted man for the killing an US citizen. By chance, a simple village woman (Rekha Thapa) arrives at the place of Satya’s hideout.
Rekha is featured as a determined and tough girl whom Satya won’t let go from his captivity. The relationship between Satya and Rekha starts and goes on in a predictable way. The story is more like any other Hindi formula movies of the 1990 era.
Strength and Weakness
The movie raises the issues of women, human rights, free journalism. These are the pressing issues of current time and the world. The movie tries to portray Satya as the Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. Although the issue is of international standard, follow up on the matter doesn’t follow the sophistication of a hacker and world class journalist.
The movie is shot in the setting of Tharu community,Â an interesting part of the movie. Interesting tags – “Disability is not an inability” and “I need brain not only muscle”.
The story movie is very predictable. Acting of some artists looks artificial and unnatural.
Rekha has a four-fold role in the movie – as an actress, writer, director and producer. As an actress, Rekha is a seasoned artist in Nepali film industry. In ‘Himmatwali’ she has acted well but, at times she has over-acted in the situations. She is a good actress but in direction, she still has a lot to learn. She starts great and the charisma fades away as the movie goes on.
The biggest asset in Sudarshan Gautam is his disability and he has presented it well. His ability to perform different tasks with his feet are the things viewers would love to watch. He he smoked with his legs, he writes with them and does a lot of un-imaginable things with his legs to impress the viewers. When it comes to acting, he could have done much more.
The movie is a formula movie. There are some new stuffs like disabled Sudarshan Gautam in leading role. There are a lot more to expect in terms of acting, story presentation, and the flow of the story. If you keep your brain at home and don’t expect anything dramatic in the movie, and you consider yourself Rekha’s fan, you might enjoy it.
Recommendation – Not recommended.
Review by â€“ Robin Manandhar
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