Nachom ia kumpasar – an ode to the Goan music and musicians

The film Nachom ia kumpasar has released in 2014, as I was at IFFI goa, I made sure that I catch this film as I really wanted to explore cinema from this region. Often we misunderstand discoveries as creation. That is what happened with this goan music too, it was discovered and exploited by the Bollywood musicians but never credited them for the work they did. There is a thin line between art and exploitation and this film just sails smoothly through the line showing us both sides if the stories. This film is based on two real life jazz musicians from the 70’s Mumbai. The film explores the relationship between Lawry and Donna and their relationship progresses as the popularity of the goan music is soaring high in the sky.

The film progresses through 20 songs recorded in that era, recreating them and takes us back to the 60’s where it all began. Lawry approaches Donna to be the singer in their band and Donna battling with problems at her home, still keeps up with her passion for music. This film is unlike all the other period drama films because it doesn’t rely on the grandeur, authenticity and props, instead finds its feat in staging and performances. Both the lead actors Vijay Mourya and Palomi Ghosh never let you take your eyes off the screen. Mirrors are used as a metaphor whenever they are conversing with each other or making love.

Despite not being a big fan of musicals, I very much admired the songs in this film. Their love, anger, lust, and everything is conveyed to us through these songs. At one point, Donna is not singing for the audience, she sings for the man she loves and cries while singing. Lawry performs for the audience with excitement as he sees the audience dancing and cheering. There is a Shakespearean style jester used here to deliver the message to the audience. He jokes first and makes us laugh and hit the nail hard with the truth in the end. This film with the use of elements like this and a clear prologue and epilogue about what it wants to convey is pretty direct and vocal. But that’s doesn’t seem like a requirement as what it tries to stay is still obvious without them.

This film is great to introduce people to this region of the country and its music and how it rose to fame and leading to its gradual natural death. With its leisurely but engaging narrative and performative music it stands great and keeps you involved till the end. Try watching this film if you want to explore a different kind of cinema.