Good Night Good Morning
Directed by Sudhish Kamath
With two strong central performances, a great script, and excellent use of artistic presentational tools, Good Night Good Morning is a very authentic, charming independent romance.
This movie didn't call for other-worldly performances, but believable ones, and that is exactly what it got. The two lead actors, played by Seema Rahmani and Manu Narayan, handle their dialogue with ease, never at all feeling forced or ingenuine. And since the majority of their performances are made up of the consistent delivery of dialogue, I can say nothing negative about either of the two lead performances, and considering my expectations, I can say I was actually quite impressed.
And that's what this movie is: two people talking. The conversation flows in a very natural, believable pattern, switching from topic to topic, delving into philosophy, religion, entertainment, and the nature of human relationships. But instead of films like Beyond Sunrise (which they specifically reference during the movie), this conversation is held entirely on the phone. We see the brief moment where they passingly meet in a bar, but the entirety of their relationship takes place over this single phone conversation. The supporting cast is used to sparingly, we often forget they're even in the movie in the first place. As the film progresses, everything else slips into the background; as the conversation becomes more in-depth, the connection between these two characters grows stronger.
Shot largely in black and white (with the exception of a few short flashback and fantasy sequences) and presented in split-screen. Both of these styles suit the tone of the film, making it feel both old-fashioned and technologically modern. I especially felt the use of split-screen was utilized to the film's advantage. This method allows us to see the characters' facial expressions throughout the entirety of their conversation; during every emotional moment and awkward pause, giving us the chance to see the way each character reacts during the moments when the camera normally wouldn't follow them.
I loved almost everything about this movie: The acting, writing, characters, its use of black and white, split-screen, and flashback/fantasy sequences. My only real complaint about this movie is in its lack of originality, which, as I've mentioned before on numerous occasions, still isn't too much of a concern to me. Though most people might find movies like this boring, I found it captivating. In other words, this is my kind of movie.