The very basis of Masaan lies in the small town feel it provides. Unlike most Bollywood films which have begun to overtly focus on urban suave lifestyle and the problems of its liberated youth, Masaan goes where the heart of the country lies – the holy pilgrimage city of Banaras.
The 4 characters in the film are marred by the traditions and outdated customs but do not let those determine their future for them. And the cultural settings of Banaras where life and death merge provide the perfect character for the film. Maybe that is why the film was picked up at prestigious film festivals like Cannes. The two stories run parallel and each character tries to overcome the past hurdles presented to them.
The love stories in the film – Devi and Piyush and Deepak and Shaalu – are not clichéd, but ones marred by societal conventions which they are trying hard to break free of. It makes your heart go out to them while also making it very relatable. The heart and soul of the film are, of course, in Banaras and the dilemma the youth in such cities face is how it works.