A creative from the Assamese short film 'Darling Docait'

In ‘Darling Docait’, KC Digital Films’ latest short film, Rock Nobis writes, directs and also stars in as a mysterious young lad with some nasty tricks up his sleeve. Taking cue from the infinite films about con artists that we have watched throughout our film viewing careers – from insurance company scams to bank frauds to brides eloping with money the very night of wedding – Rock Nobis lands up on yet another interesting prospect that can surely attract the mind of the twisted.

He creates a whole new take on the home invasion genre and draws a horrifying fate for PG owners in the city. But it is surely not unpredictable. The twist is as expected as it comes about.

But what’s new about this tale is – the character David in ‘Darling Docait’ – that can be or cannot be understood through his victims. The unwary, and reliable set of people invariably and usually shares the misfortune in these movies. Mostly, these are the wealthy, sometimes the exceedingly greedy, and sometimes the haughty, harsh, or sometimes the ones madly in love, that meet a financially tragic end. But in the case of this story, we are never made aware of the motives or considerations involved in choosing the victim household. It renders David’s character weak but also as interesting in some crude ways.

The constant breaking of the fourth wall very much makes David the central piece of this film, but yet again, it provides only half the information. And the viewer’s imagination is free to run wild with the remaining half. And by doing so, it adheres to the true purpose of short storytelling. Everything is an artistic endeavour, whether it’s about deceiving someone, crafting a novel, or covering one’s true self (painting the face dark), or painting depressing pictures.

A still from the Assamese short film 'Darling Docait'
A still from the Assamese short film ‘Darling Docait’

One more thing – as a victim of violence as a child, David had an unpleasant childhood. But failing to use this as a plot device for any meaningful reflection, ‘Darling Docait’ only degenerates into a persistently self-gratifying ride with no rationale behind some of the causes and effects. And when I write ‘meaningful reflection’, I do not mean a sob story or a moral sermon!

Anyway, the pace of the film is occasionally slow but there is a fantastic mood and a solid build up. The dialogues initially seem a little discouraging, but it improves over time. The ending of ‘Darling Docait’ offers a comeuppance that many viewers will associate with the Sujoy Ghosh short film ‘Ahalya’ (the doll there and the painting here), even though believability and positive reasoning doesn’t seem to be a priority with this effort.

I was really interested in learning how the girl disguised the effects of the sleeping tablets in her drink and how she first learned about David. These are answers imagination cannot provide; only logic can.

‘Darling Docait’ is now streaming on YouTube. Watch it here:

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About Kalpa Jyoti Bhuyan

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The writer is a MA Political Science student of Gauhati University. He did his graduation from Cotton University. Apart from writing, he is a movie enthusiast.

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