In the last few days, I’ve had the chance to catch up on some movies. Rather than get into details of each, here’s a quick review of all:
Guzaarish. (Rating 2/5) Absolute rubbish. So Sanjay Leela Bhansali continues to live in his own little world. Where the houses are grand, servants are loyal, incomes are nil and lifestyles are lavish. Go figure! There’s a great deal of confusion about the period of the film. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan dresses like she’s just returned from 15th century Spain and Hrithik dresses like he’s stuck in the 1980s. Aditya Roy Kapoor (or could be Kapur) is as pleasing as Shakti Kapoor in Raja Babu. Shot beautifully, the music is average. The story is strong, but the screenplay sucks. Performances are mostly over the top with too much English. Shernaz Patel is a disaster. The sentences of this review are largely staccato because that’s how the film felt.
Udaan. (Rating: 4/5) Stupendous! Rarely does a film with such a hard-hitting subject tug at the heart so much. The story of a broken home where the older son is kicked out of boarding school for a third offence. He returns home to find out that his father – whom he hadn’t met in 8 years – had remarried and has a six-year-old son. Readjusting to life in Jamshedpur with his step-brother, the protagonist Rohan is torn between his dream of becoming a writer and living up to his father’s expectations and demands.
The abusive father (Bhairav Singh), played brilliantly by Ronit Roy, is easy to hate. Constantly insulting Rohan and even his own younger brother, Bhairav Singh is easy to hate. And no, there’s nothing redemptive about him as he decides to marry a third time, this time, “for himself”.
Udaan is the story of flight, of freedom and of growing up. Even when Rohan rebels against his father, he is always restrained. You can almost feel him reasoning within whether he should go the whole hog or stay within boundaries. When he finally does snap, the punch he lands on his father is one that almost makes you cheer.
Also commendable are roles played by Ram Kapoor (as B Singh’s younger brother) and Rohan’s step-brother Arjun played Aayan Boradia. For a young debutante, Aayan’s portrayal of the terrorized son is outstanding. A must-see movie, this is about how not to raise kids.