Patang | Movie review
Chicago director Prashant Bhargava gorges on kite imagery.
Patang, a.k.a. The Kite, is predominantly set on the rooftops of Ahmedabad, India, during an annual kite-flying festival, the Uttarayan. The film rivals Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted as the most colorful movie of the summer: Locals fill the sky with thousands of vibrantly hued kites; at night they enjoy fireworks and sky lanterns. Director Prashant Bhargava, a Chicago native who visited Ahmedabad repeatedly over six years to make the film, gorges on kaleidoscopic visuals. Though Patang is a feast for the eyes, the narrative is pretty thin. A man named Jayesh (Mukkund Shukla) returns to his family home after many years in Delhi. While his daughter (Sugandha Garg) explores a possible romance, he tries to reconcile with his nephew (Nawazuddin), who blames Jayesh for the death of his father. The story lines proceed in sluggish, predictable fashion, but the exquisite kite imagery makes a satisfying, multifaceted metaphor for everything from a returning son’s lingering ties to a city he believed he’d left to a young man’s desire to fly away from the confines of his provincial home.