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Thinking Of Him

Thinking Of Him Movie Review

by rameshe

Critic’s Rating : 2.5 / 5

Thinking Of Him Movie Review : An untold chapter in Rabindranath Tagore’s life

STORY: The story revolves around Victoria Ocampo, an Argentine feminist, writer and activist, and her admiration for Indian Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore. She became enamoured with Tagore after reading the French translation of ‘Gitanjali’ (a collection of his poems), and even looked after him when he fell ill during a visit to Buenos Aires in 1924.

REVIEW: Based on a real-life story, Pablo Cesar, the Argentine director and producer of ‘Thinking of Him, has recreated the events of the untold chapter in Rabindranath Tagore’s (played by Victor Banerjee) bond with Victoria Ocampo (played by Eleonora Wexler). It transports us to 1924, when Tagore had to stop in Buenos Aires (the capital of Argentina) for a medical rest, where he had met Victoria, who took care of him during his 58-days stay. The great Indian philosopher-poet led her to a spiritual awakening and literary inspiration. The plot revolves around Tagore’s platonic love for his caregiver, which was reciprocated by Ocampo’s spiritual love.

The story by Jeronimo Toubes alternates between two eras—one in black-and-white with Tagore and Ocampo; the other in colour with Felix (Héctor Bordoni), an Argentine school teacher who visits Shantiniketan to learn Tagore’s method of teaching. There, he meets Kamali (Raima Sen), who assists him with his soul-searching and battling his inner demons. Both these timelines are shot in different styles, but the Tagore-Victoria scenes appear authentic and beautifully narrated (especially, after Tagore had returned to India and exchanged a plethora of letters with Ocampo); the other story falls flat. Parts of the screenplay appear hollow, making it difficult to establish a rapport with the audience. There are, however, moments that captivate you, but they never last long enough.

Eleonara Wexler, the Argentine actress, portrays Ocampo with dignity and grace. She expresses every emotion with finesse: whether she is ecstatic to meet her idol yet nervous when the time comes, or when she is heartbroken as he departs for India. Victor Banerjee’s performance of Tagore is composed. To make his dialogues more impactful, he uses a calm tone and necessary pauses.

Héctor Bordoni’s Felix looks promising in the beginning but quickly fades into oblivion, and once he arrives in India, his character is reduced to a cliched overenthusiastic foreigner. Raima Sen as Kamali role is limited to assisting Felix in healing. Cesar couldn’t make the connection between this contemporary story and Tagore’s relationship with Ocampo. It even begs the question of the correlation between these two stories, except for the fact that Felix was inspired by Tagore and sought healing at his ashram.

Interestingly, the creators have used Tagore’s poems, which are narrated in the background. However, they have only scratched the surface of the subject, piquing viewers’ interest in learning more about Tagore-Ocampo. To summarise, if you enjoy subjective films and are curious about an untold chapter of Tagore’s life, this one could be a fascinating watch.

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