Binnu Ka Sapna presents the twisted mind and actions of a young man that reflect the cruelty he grew up with. Kanu Behl is back, this time with TTT, to write and direct yet another film that talks about the violence in society, this time dealing with the perennial problem of patriarchy. In a heart numbing tale, which through its simplicity, but also complexity will immerse you deep into this painfully cathartic experience, causing introspection later.
Kanu Behl is no stranger to films that are a little off beat. A multiple-award winning writer-director, once again knocks it out of the park by portraying the issue of patriarchy with unflattering, real visuals, and a narration that carries out this immersive experience. A man, writing and directing a story about patriarchy, comes from a place of personal experience and with this film, will definitely make a difference.
The movie starts off with a voiceover of Binnu, who talks about how his father was, a man who couldn’t control his anger. An Indian man, deeply rooted in this patriarchal society. An Indian man, for whom, the only way to release anger because of his own flaws, insecurities and jealousy, was physical abuse. Binnu has grown up hearing about his mother’s first slap, 25 years ago, hit by his father merely for emerging from the same room as her own brother-in-law, a clear representation of toxic masculinity. But still somehow, after all those years, his mother still liked one thing about his father, his tea.
Many years later, he leaves home. He is a bright student with chemistry as his strong point and he starts working in a company where he looks up to his boss. He considers him as an ideal figure and upholds everything he says. At a party, he sleeps with his Boss’ daughter, who he falls in love with. But things don’t go as planned. Binnu leaves town.
The writer has used something as menial or regular as preparing tea, and the steps involved in making a good cup of tea, and symbolises stages of life while one is discovering themselves. Other than that, also, the narration is written with a lot of symbolism and layers that adds onto the relatively simple visuals with great performances, and barely any dialogues.
For most of the first 15 minutes of the film, one doesn’t understand what the writer is trying to convey. But it is this same ambiguity, which sets the stage for what’s next to come. Binnu’s life revolves around building an impossible dream – recreating the incident he has seen since adolescence. He wants to lovingly feed cups of tea to someone. But does he know to love? Or even listen?
Winning Best Indian Short at the Jagran Festival 2019, and now streaming on Mubi India for a limited time, Binnu ka Sapna evokes powerful emotions from within against violence against women at a psychological level, and also is a strong film about perpetration of patriarchy from one generation to the next.