Kaushik Ghantasala, Elester Latham, Candido Carter, Keagan Guy, Megan Barlow, Satya Yamini, Scott Young, Robert Malcolm Cumming, Brock Horwitz, Steve Delgado, Trevor Powers, Joseph Covino, Sai Karthik Movva
Sai Praneeth Gouravaraju, Sripal Sama
Movie Review: How is That for a Monday?
Kaushik Ghantasala is the heart and soul of Sripal Sama's somewhat satirical, socially minded How is That for a Monday?, a narrative feature film that takes one day in the lives of a billionaire, a gang of amateur thieves, an old man, and Ghantasala's immigrant techie and tells a story of intersecting lives and happenings to tell a story that touches on various themes including racism, police brutality, and class differences.
Co-written by Sama with Sai Praneeth Gouravaraju, How is That for a Monday is an ambitious film that brings to mind such films as the Oscar-winner Crash, though the film certainly never quite connects on that level.
As is nearly always true of modestly budgeted indie flicks, the ensemble cast is a bit hit-and-miss here with Ghantasala for the most part convincingly carrying the lead and serving as a bridge for other performers including Megan Barlow as Yolanda, Robert Malcolm Cumming as the Billionaire, and Candido Carter as Brandon. Filmed in Orange County, California, How Is That for a Monday features effective lensing by Rahul Biruly with a particularly strong score by Dawn Vincent.
The film does struggle with its tone at times, a fact likely attributable to the fairly large ensemble and the multiple story threads. That said, there's lots of promise here and I'll look forward to seeing where Sripal Sama takes the film along its festival journey and what he comes up with cinematically with future projects.
Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic