Sherni is not talking about the plague. Far from that, the film discusses the issue of conservation. The pre-production phase also started before the pandemic (production started in early March 2020, before a break due to the lockdown, then continued in October). Interestingly, various situations feel relevant. The people are running out of options in the midst of precarious conditions, while the government never offers a solution. As if to emphasize, whatever threat lurks, whether a dead ly plague or a tiger attack, the real terror comes from a thing called “politicization”. Top Movie Site
Vidya Vincent (Vidya Balan) has just been appointed to head the Indian Forest Service field team in Madhya Pradesh. It’s not an easy job, especially after a tigress, which often preys on residents’ livestock, has now started killing humans. The focus of Vidya and his team is of course capturing the tiger alive, but the situation is not that simple.
Catching an adult tiger is already a tough task, especially since he received pressure from here and there. Residents were forbidden to enter the forest for safety, but if they did, their livestock would starve. Sounds like the current situation doesn’t it? This is where people need a definite solution. Need real help from the government. So what did the power holders do?
Vidya’s boss (Brijendra Kala) is not at all interested in conservation. He couldn’t tell the difference between animal species, preferred to crack jokes at meetings, and was more concerned with how to satisfy a politician. The politician was in ties of three money. Caring only about the number of election votes, he uses an instant line by sending Pintu (Sharat Saxena), a hunter.
Not stopping there, his political opponents also made things worse. Both sides made promises to save the citizens, but in truth, they were just trying to bring each other down. The people were caught between the political game. The people wait for solutions, while the rulers pursue ambitions.
Aastha Tiku’s manuscript presents a complete and detailed description of what are the stumbling blocks that hinder the conservation process, or more generally, what hinders the creation of harmony between humans and animals. Nothing escapes the twist of the script, and we get an understanding, that all problems lead to a corrupt system, which is triggered by human greed. Best Movie
Tiku’s desire to appear complete is not without a negative impact. Some parts can actually be trimmed to condense the storytelling. For example, the sudden arrival of Vidya’s mother and in-laws, which aims to build a comparison between conservative India and the modern side represented by Vidya. Without it, the audience can still understand that the protagonist is an independent woman, who is against sexist orthodoxy.
The direction of Amit V. Masurkar (best known through Newton, as India’s representative at the 2018 Academy Awards) also produced several scenes that lasted longer than necessary. We don’t need to watch the Pintu car go through a lot of trouble when it’s about to turn around, in order to understand how stupid and ridiculous the hunter is.
Initially Sherni had a (more) happy conclusion, before being changed in the middle of production, in order to add relevance during the pandemic. The ending of this new version is still hopeful, but shows the risks that we can potentially encounter if we don’t immediately appreciate nature. A wake-up call, which is due to a lack of patience in the construction of the moment, feels less piercing and tends to be ambiguous.
Translated, “sherni” means “tiger”. In addition to referring to the tiger being hunted, this word also describes the figure of Vidya who is persistent in fighting. Aking Vidya Balan makes the character more complex. It’s true he’s brave, but that doesn’t mean he’s fearless. Several times Vidya wanted to stop.
At one point, Vidya comes face to face with a politician who opposes the rangers. Vidya dares to argue. But the way he spoke implied doubt (though he remained firm). Gesture closer to defensive than aggressive. He hesitated, maybe even scared, but refused to back down. Therein lies Vidya’s strength as a human. Movie Review