Ima Machet Icha Tangkhai – A Film Review

Rajmani Ayekpam
It’s really an encouraging sign that even the pandemic has not slowed down the momentum of Manipuri films. Many Manipuri short comic strips or films came up in the YouTube channel. People enjoy these creative products. YouTube is the best platform for exploring their talent for amateurs as well as professionals. After arrival of mobile smart phone,  internet is no longer for few privilege people. Even an ordinary people can enjoy best entertainment available under this planet. Many Manipuri feature films also came up after some relaxation of pandemic restrictions for cine crazy people of this State. SOPs of Covid-19 permit to fill fifty percent of seat capacity of the cinema halls. Even, free shows or charity shows were done here and there. Cinema gives not only entertainment to the people but also give a means of income generation both to the artistes community and Government.
Among few films whihc came out after pandemic relaxation, Ima Machet Icha Tangkhai is one of the eye catching films and audiences deserve to watch it. The story is good, powerful and contemporary. Friendship, career, adoption and luck in life became central theme of the film. Love of true friendship is very rare now-a-days. The story of the film tries to focus on true friendship and played an important role in the turning point of story. Then, career was also important aspect of the life and can bring someone’s life to the other side. Child adoption was considered lightly in this ignorant society of the Manipur. But, it can’t be ignorant according to themes and story of this film. Luck also played an important part in one’s turning point of life.
Leipakchao and Sanahal are good friends. Leipakchao was brought up like the real brother of Sanahal by the parents of Sanahal as Leipakchao lost his parents at a tender age. They got matured and attained marriageable age. Both got married. While Leipakchao got married with his village heart throb Thambal, Sanahal got married to a city girl Sakhenbi. Then, Thambal and Sakhenbi also became good friends. Leipakchao and Thambal don’t have a child. Meanwhile, Sanahal and Sakhenbi gave birth to twin girl babies. The twin babies named Sajik and Thaba. Sanahal and Sakhenbi gave their child Thaba to Leipakchao and Thambal  to adopt as their own child to strengthen their bond of friendship. Thaba grew up as innocent village girl and Sajik grew up as a sophisticated city kid. Sajik as a city kid became arrogant and addicted to mobile phone game. Even she was not good at school also. At last, Sajik died of mobile explosion. Sakhenbi’s life was in despair and looking for Thaba who had given to Leipakchao and Thambal. She wanted to see Thaba so she went to village many times. Thambal tried to hide Thaba from the eye of Sankhenbi due to over protection. Sakhenbi felt unhappy because of Thambal’s attitude. So, Sakhenbi went to law Court to reclaim her child. According to Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, a child can’t be adopted without valid document and reason. The verdict of law Court was to take back child to her real mother. Sakhenbi got back her child Thaba. The child Thaba, in her heart, was more inclined to her adopted mother than her real mother. So, she ran away from her real mother’s place and reunited with their adopted parents. This story brought the message that there is enough child for a good mother. There shall be no love lost between good friendship even if time and situation interrupt them. Ima Machet Icha Tangkhai is the maiden venture of Luwang Film Production. However, the production team is an experienced hand in the line of film making.  Homeshwari (Director & actor), Ranjit Ningthouja (Story & Screenplay), Regan (Cinematography & Editor) etc. are established names in Manipuri films and more than ten films are credited to them. And other credits lines are also experienced ones. Participating artistes are Gokul, Bony Shart, Abenao, Soma, Baby Luwang Thoibi (introducing), Baby Koloisana (introducing), Lalitabi, Sangita, Santajit, Krishnananda, Ashok, Birjit (Bungcha), Santosh, Romila, Kipjen, Edhou, Joybidhya, Jayenta, Eche Radhe, Romen, Loken. On the credit lines are Baby Gaganpriya (singer), Loijingkhombi (singer), Pushparani (singer), Nongmaithem Ibomcha (Music director & singer), Nanao Sagolmang (Music director & Back score), Rajmani Ayekpam (lyricist), Birmangol Mekola (lyricist), Subhaschandra Hiyanglam (Production Manager), Brojen (light), Ingocha (Transportation), Kangla Films (Equipments), Kenedy (Ass. Make-up), Scarlet (Asst. Make-up), Poison Khurai (Make-up), Galif-pa (Costume) and Meneka (Choreography) etc.
Good photography and strong story line are the backbones of the film. Naturalistic but lyrical photography makes this film flow like a poem. Ranjit Ningthouja is a seasoned writer in the field of Shumang Leela and film. More than sixty Shumang Leela scripts and more than twenty film scripts are credited to him. His story and screenplay in this film are well organized and show the experienced hand of a seasoned writer. Two songs of the film can attract attention. Nungsi Nungol Houna Tha (duet song sung by Ibomcha and Pushparani, lyric by Mekola Birmangol and music by Nongmaithem Ibomcha) is one of the catching songs. This song has topped AIR Imphal’s top 10 film songs many times. Moreover, the song sequence is one of the most watched on cable TV & Youtube channel. Another song Ichadi Chaore (duet song sung by Pushparani & Baby Gaganpriya) is another catchy song and helps the flow of the film. The main artistes of the film Gokul, Bony, Abenao and Soma are good choices. Baby Luwang Thoibi, the protagonist of the film, in her maiden performance did well in the double role. Ima Machet Icha Tangkhai, one of the few films after pandemic is worth mentioning because of both its aesthetic value and entertainment spices.