“Changa Chet” Movie Review : A Moderately New Wine In An Old Bottle

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RUPAK RISAL
Nepali cinema, for a while has been ruled by artists from the stage and television. With some exceptions, movies acted by television or stage artists have been much more successful than the ones with mainstream artists on them. These movies, made mostly in action-comedy genre, have become trendsetters in content and storytelling style. So much so that these trendsetting movies produced, directed and/or acted by entertainers from the field of television and stage have become much of mainstream movies than the conventional ones.

Director Khanal has brought together an ensemble cast, including one from television and one from stage for the movie “CHANGA CHET”, which is releasing at the theatres near you from this Friday. The movie starts with separate stories and dilemmas of three friends Thaman Bahadur (Sandeep), Niraj (Ayushman) and Udit Narayan Jha (Rabindra). To what extent do they go to get rid of their financial crisis and what price do they have to pay for that makes up the rest of the story.

Movies about youths coming to Kathmandu with their own problems have already been made before. Action comedy movies with ensemble cast are also nothing new to Nepali audience.  Challenges and issues raised in CHANGA CHET have already been watched in other movies such as ANTARAL, LOOT, PASHUPATI PRASAD AND JATRA. So how is this movie CHANGA CHET, which is made in the similar fashion? How successful is it in terms of entertainment? Let’s analyze.

CHANGA CHET is an action-comedy and it has a plenty of scenes to make the audience laugh. The story initially revolves around Thaman, Niraj and Udit. Later, Manisha (SurakshyaPanta) also gets involved. The movie is successful in luring the audience to serious turn unknowingly while they are still laughing at one point. There is not much of a suspense in the story but the movie is successful in convincing the audience and make them feel ‘who cares while I am still enjoying it’.

There is nothing new in the movie but it is much more polished than other run of the mill movies. Sandeep, Ayushman and Rabindra share an amazing chemistry. Even during situations of conflict, they equally share enthusiasm and perform with confidence. Sandeep sometimes goes over the top with performance but it never looks forced. He has good screen presence and is the funniest of all in the movie. However, the real revelation has been Ayushman. He is the best of the lot when it comes to acting and gives us the feeling that he is growing along with the movie with his sincere performance. He has the presence of a star. Rabindra is good as usual but he has done a similar role before. Without a doubt, performance of actors is the best aspect of CHANGA CHET. Everyone has given very good performance. Surakshya has better role than one of Priyanka and Parameeta and she has done absolute justice to her role. However, a song sequence which could have better been avoided, it looks as if she was not comfortable doing it.

Apart from goji ma daamchhaina, all other songs are forgettable. In fact, a couple of scenes from the beginning and songs could easily have been avoided to cut the length by good half an hour.

Cinematography is ordinary, but post interval and night scenes of the climax are shot well. They go easy on the eye unlike night sequences in many other Nepali movies.

All in all, CHANGA CHET is an average story with good comic relief and smart punch lines. If you don’t get tired of waiting for the story to develop in the beginning and can handle occasional hiccups, you will surely enjoy the movie.

Ratings: 2.5/5
Producer: Madhav Wagle/ Sharmila Pandey
Director: Dipendra K. Khanal
Cast: Sandeep Chhetri, Ayushman Deshraj Shrestha Joshi, Rabindra Jha, Priyanka Karki, Parameeta Rana, Suraksyha Panta, Arpan Thapa, Maotse Gurung, Shishir Bangdel et al.

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