23 February 2017 | indianature
Stunning visuals, great plot
I would actually rate JAL a 10 if only this terribly tragic O'Henry - esque tale had been shown better. Not sure where the fault lies because the plot is great, the visuals are fantastic, the acting good, the settings more than superb.
Everything was great but the tragedy that plays out in the latter half just does not come through tragically enough - for want of a better choice of words.
If Kutch Tourism needs a boost, then it should screen Jal on TV often enough. I saw this today on YouTube after having seen Parched yesterday which is also set in Kutch, with Tannishtha Chatterjee aptly portraying the key female role in both films. I saw the Jal movie on the same YouTube page as Parched and decided to watch Jal today.
Must say that in both films Tanishtha could easily pass off as a Kutchi village woman. Great job, she surely deserves to be given more films in Bollywood. The scene where she offers herself to the villain Punia to save Bakka's heavily pregnant wife from being raped, is outstanding and superbly filmed in an understated manner that nonetheless conveys it all.
The cinematography is fantastic, beautifully showcasing the mud hut villages, the starkly beautiful arid desertscapes, the flamingoes, the camels, the people, the parched land, the essence of Kutch, it all looks so real.
The twist in the tale O'Henry ending is also superb. This is a movie where the real villain laughs all the way to the bank while the real hero and the real heroine go nowhere.
Overall, this is a must watch film and not just for the Kutch visuals.