Anvita Dutt's directorial debut Bulbbul has emerged as the feminist fable for the current century, with protagonist Tripti Dimri's performance completely winning over the crowd.
Tripti plays the role of Bulbbul, a victim of child marriage, who seeks companionship of the only person close to her in age, her brother-in-law Satya (Avinash Tiwary).
As she grows older, her sister-in-law Binodini's (a brilliant Paoli Dam) machinations, driven by insecurity and her husband's (Rahul Bose) anger, driven by jealousy, force her to lose more than the only friend she has known.
What follows is a physically and emotionally traumatic journey, that leads her to take matters into her own hands, literally.
In just her third film, Tripti Dimri showcases a nuanced performance, that perfectly captures the pain, anger, and heartbreak of a young girl suppressed by a patriarchal society.
Tripti Dimri debuted with the comedy-drama Poster Boys in 2017, but the film remained nothing more than a blip in Bollywood's releases for the year. Her next release, Laila Majnu, also slipped under the radar.
Even amongst critics, her co-star Avinash Tiwary's performance earned praise for being the most underrated performance of the year.
Though she is back with her Laila Majnu co-star in Bulbbul, there is no danger of either the film or her performance, going unnoticed.
Because it is impossible to take your eyes away from her, even when she is sharing screen space with an actor as talented and loved as Rahul Bose.
Perhaps it was the conviction with which she played Bulbbul that struck a chord with the audience. In her own words, as shared in an interview with NDTV, with Bulbbul she grew as an actor professionally, and even learned to love herself a little more.
“It was a great learning experience for me from day one. This film helped me start loving myself a little more, and to accept who I am. When I was essaying the part, I realised what all she has gone through. It made me question why we put ourselves in such situations. Why we give power to others that they can affect us so much? And thus apart from being a great professional outing, it also helped me personally.
Clearly, Bulbbul is a role close to her heart. But Tripti, who was actually inspired by her father to pursue acting, never thought that she would have a chance in movies.
Originally hailing from Uttarakhand, Tripti started her journey with modeling and commercials, and was also a part of the Vogue Wedding Show in 2016, before being cast in Poster Boys.
By her own admission, she has been replaced by established stars and was rejected from Laila Majnu initially, until a chance second audition landed her the role of Laila.
I have auditioned for a lot of films and at the final stage, I have been told that an established actor is doing the film. This has happened to me a lot of time. So this time (when she was cast in Laila Majnu), I was shocked. I had auditioned for the film (Laila Majnu) in 2016 but I got rejected at that time.
Though the 2018 release failed to make its mark, Bulbbul has definitely turned the tables when it comes to Tripti's popularity with the audience. Here's hoping her flight to great roles continues to soar.