23 Mag «Roached» by Kshitij Sharma
«Roached» is a surreal story that has both realism and topicality that cannot fail to have the effect of a punch in the stomach for the viewer.
A newly married bourgeois couple, seemingly happy, find themselves forced to spend their days locked in their home because of the covid lockdown. The husband, Manav, begins to monitor his wife Anuradha’s life obsessively.
In this film, which marks a turning point in his artistic maturity, director Kshitij Sharma shows a more subtle and insidious form of male violence than that which leaves bruises on the skin, but which digs deep by festering like a tenacious parasite.
Hence the decision for a symbolic metaphor of what: a bug that terrorizes even when unseen, but haunts with its presence by nesting in the mind of the protagonist.
Masterfully interpreted by Deeya Dey and Rudolfo Rajeev Hubert, who are able to move naturally from almost theatrical drama to the most authentic realism, and emphasized by cinematographer Abhishek Negi’s narrative use of light, this film fuses in an original script the solutions pioneered by director Kshitij Sharma in previous experiments with genre cinema.
In «Roached» resonates with a critique and an honest depiction of the society we imagine outside the walls of the house in which the film is set, and a middle class torn between tradition and a desire for independence.
And the pandemic, of course, has seen abuse dynamics growing in homes around the world regardless of social class.
Sharma’s latest work infuses an element of magical realism into a universal and timely story that despite the bitterness of the truth leaves us with a message of hope.