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How About A Kiss review: Predictable take on a student-teacher relationship

Release Date: 15 Apr 2020

Cinestaan Rating

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Sukhpreet Kahlon

Starring Rajat Kapoor and Ritabhari Chakraborty, the muddled film does not have much to offer. 

Directed by Satarupa Sanyal and written by Ritabhari Chakraborty, the short How About A Kiss features the often seen thread of romance in a student-teacher relationship, which plays out in a predictable fashion.

Anand (Rajat Kapoor) is a professor who finds one of his students Pari (Ritabhari Chakraborty) distracted in class and slipping in her grades. Concerned, he reaches out to her with a self-help book, but his efforts are shunned.

However, he perseveres, sensing that she needs guidance and help. Pari eventually opens up to him, sharing her battle with depression and follows his advice to make things better. In the process, they form a friendship. Pari, elated at the progress that she has made, falls in love with him.  

How About A Kiss is muddled about what it is really addressing. Is it about Pari and her fight with depression? If so, that bit is truncated, with the narrative abruptly shifting gears to get to the romance. Pari’s turnabout and resolution with her internal state is abrupt and her latching on to the one person who has shown sympathy towards her is well, predictable.

So, is the film about the romance between a student and teacher? That bit too is half-baked as we are only given precious few insights into Anand, his life and what he wants. A fleshed out script would have factored these moments in, which remain undeveloped.

There are certain instances in the film that are a bit odd, like the scene where Pari implores Anand to go to the beach with her and is stubborn and childish in her behaviour. He keeps saying that it is inappropriate, yet he concedes, laying the groundwork for all that will follow! 

Chakraborty is passable in her role which is played at a high pitch, in stark contrast to the more understated character of Anand portrayed by Kapoor. One wishes that his talent had been put to more use and that he had more to do in the film. 

How About a Kiss is one of the nine exclusive films being showcased as part of the Zee5 Short Film Festival. 

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