Director: Ram Kamal Mukherjee
Cast: Esha Deol Takhtani & Tarun Malhotra
So when is the last time you had some food and remembered your loved ones? I am sure that often happens. We Indians often relate our memories with food. And that’s what author turned director Ram Kamal Mukherjee does in his debut recipe Cakewalk. A film that enters through your taste buds and leaves a sweet note even after the film gets over.
Set in city of joy Kolkata, the film opens with Shilpa Sen (Esha Deol Takhtani) trying to reach office on time. What seems like a simple day for Shilpa turns out to be one of the toughest day, after her boss (Siddhartha Chatterjee) asks her to bake a cake “Alaska” for a special client (Tarun Malhotral) who visits the five star hotel with his sultry trophy wife (Anindita Bose) to celebrate his marriage anniversary. What seems easy for a masterchef runners up, happens to be anything but a cakewalk!
Esha Deol Takhtani is the show stopper and she takes away the cake and the bakery with her stupendous performance, quite literally. From the word go, she had the perfect body language of a chef. Her eyes would tell a zillion stories. The close up shots by cinematographer Pravatendu Mondol deserves special mention. Esha worked in many films, with established banners and directors, but this one will remain her career best role. Needless to say, she will not only sweep away awards anf accolades for her superlative performance, but will play a stronger second innings in Bollywood.
Esha Deol needs to select her directors right, just as she did for Cakewalk, as no one would have made her look as stunning as Hema Malini on screen. She wins our heart with her silences and pathos in each and every scene.
Tarun Malhotra as supporting cast gives ample room for Esha to play around. Even in the climax scene Esha grabed attention with her underplay in the domestic fight sequence. Her helplessnes in the relationship was so well captured by Ram Kamal in a capsule movie that it leaves us craving for some more.
Special credit goes to Kolkata actress Anindita Bose, who barely had few scenes. But in those countable scenes she proved her mettle as a strong performer. We wish Esha and Anindita had some scenes together.
Ram Kamal Mukherjee seems to be the captain of the ship, while Abhra Chakraborty worked as co-director. Since we don’t know who played what role on the set, we would like to give credit to both the makers for making a film that will be remembered for his content. We wish the director duo could have kept few lighter scenes to balance the heavy emotional moments in the film.
Music by Shailendra Sayanti is hummable and stays with you for a while. Rupali Jagga is a revelation. She will definitely create sensation in music industry with her “Alaska” voice. She was as smooth as the cake.
Ram Kamal Mukherjee being a journalist and author tapped on the right pulse of the audience. A food film, with women chef strikes a direct chord with the audience. We wish he made this as a full length feature film. As Esha reminds us of Jaya Bhadhuri in Kora Kagaz, Ram Kamal leaves a “Ray” of hope for people who still believes in the institution of marriage. Costume designer Kareen Pawani and background score by Prajna Dutta deserves special mention, along with cinematographer Pravatendu Mondol’s city shots that eventually gave grandeur to this 27 minute short feature film.
Cakewalk is a rightly baked dessert, that deserves 4 stars. Watch it now, before it melts!
Checkout Cakewalk on Voot: https://go.voot.com/cYLWjQGfpU