Glamour Struck Productions Pvt. Ltd. and Maxwell Entertainment Pvt. Ltd.’s Prague (UA) is a psychological thriller. It is the story of three friends, Chandan (Chandan Roy Sanyal), Gulshan (Mayank Kumar) and Arfi (Arfi Lamba). Arfi has been ditched and dumped by his girlfriend. Chandan is also quite unsuccessful in love and, somehow, friend Gulshan manages to sleep with girls whom Chandan succeeds in wooing.
Chandan’s work brings him to Prague where he meets a Czech girl, Elena (Elena Kazan). He falls in love with her and woos her till ultimately, she also starts loving him. Then, one day, Chandan sees Elena getting intimate in bed with Gulshan (who has also come to Prague with him). He is crestfallen and begins to avoid Elena.
All along, Gulshan keeps reminding Chandan that Arfi is dead and that his conversations with Arfi are nothing but a manifestation of his imagination. Chandan agrees that Arfi is no more but he is unable to stop hallucinating about him. Arfi keeps warning Chandan about getting hurt in love. The story takes a dramatic turn when, in a fit of rage, Chandan hacks Gulshan to death in Prague. Something about Chandan and Gulshan’s past emerges, which is shocking. What is that? Elena, pleading for Chandan’s attention after he starts to avoid her, meanwhile, realises that he is not interested in her. She, therefore, decides to commit suicide. Does she actually end her life? Is Chandan able to get over his hallucinations about Arfi? If yes, how? If not, why not? What about Chandan’s love life?
Rohit Khaitan’s concept about a boy troubled by hallucinations is quite interesting but the drama unfolds in a way that an ordinary viewer will not be able to completely follow the proceedings. The story, written by Ashish R. Shukla and …, is also interesting but very class-appealing. The screenplay, penned by Sumit Saxena, Ashish R. Shukla, Akshendra Mishra, Vijay Verma and Rohit Khaitan, is interesting but, again, it goes back and forth so many times that it confuses the ordinary viewer. Yes, the classes or the evolved audience would like the structure of the screenplay but that section of the audience is very small. In fact, the right audience for this kind of a film is the festival circuit audience.
The turns and twists in the film, especially about Arfi’s death and similar happenings in the life of Chandan, are intriguing and also quite chilling. Dialogues are appropriate but a lot of swear words have been muted, which will irritate the audience. There is liberal use of English in the dialogues, adding to the woes of non-English-speaking viewers.
Chandan Roy Sanyal does a swell job as the hallucinating Chandan who otherwise seems like a very normal man. He is excellent in conveying the different emotions he experiences at different points of time in his life. Mayank Kumar is suitably easy-going in his approach and makes his presence felt in the role of Gulshan. Arfi Lamba is natural as the agonising Arfi. Elena Kazan looks pretty and glamorous and she acts effortlessly. Sonia Bindra is natural in the role of Shubhangi. The others lend adequate support.
Director Ashish R. Shukla handles the difficult subject with the sensitivity it requires but he caters to the festival circuit and high-gentry audience only. To the large base of mass audience, the film will be incomprehensible at several places. Atif Afzal’s music and Varun Grover’s lyrics go well with the mood of the film. But the absence of popular songs is, of course, a minus point for the commercial prospects of the film. Back ground music (Atif Afzal) is good. Uday Singh Mohite’s cinematography is of a nice standard. Parvez Shaikh’s action and stunt scenes are suitably thrilling and even scary, where necessary. Siddharth Mathawan and Mrinal Das’s sets are alright. Meghna Manchanda Sen’s editing is sharp.
On the whole, Prague is a well-made film for the evolved audience but its box-office prospects are very bleak because of complete lack of mass appeal and absence of face value.
The film opened to very poor houses today.