Cast-Rani Mukherji, Neeraj Kabi, Supriya Pilgaonkar,Sachin Pilgaonkar,Hussain Dala,Harsh MayarRohit Suresh Saraf
Director- Siddhartha Malhotra
Writers- Ankur Chaudhary, Siddhartha Malhotra, Ambar Hadap, Ganesh Pandit
Is an emotional and inspiring story about a woman who was born to be a teacher. She fights her own limitations, against biases, never loses faith , never gives up and believes that there are never bad students, only bad teachers.
Yet again, Rani makes Yash Raj Films (which otherwise usually sticks to formulaic films) churn out another different story.
After years of being rejected for the post of a teacher from umpteen schools, when Neha Mathur(Rani) gets a break in a city’s top school, she’s happy beyond herself. Even when she realises that she’ll be handling a tough class with a bunch of students from economically weaker section who have turned almost rebels, she doesn’t flinch. She, who has been fighting biases all along her life because of her speech defect, knows that all it takes is acceptance and love to turn students into a new leaf.
Her unflinching faith in the students ,her resilience to face their initial rebellions and non-cooperations, relentless efforts and her struggles to fight on their behalf is all this story is about.
The movie strikes all the right chords as far as emotions are concerned. Writer Director Sidhartha P Malhotra has clear idea about how to trap the audience. He knows that emotional quotient is the high point of the film and he encases it well with light humour, some engaging situations, lots of motivational appeal and umpteen number of overwhelming moments.
Be prepared with a thick wad of tissues handy as you could be shedding buckets of tears .
How, as a little girl, she craves for a little understanding ,empathy and acceptance from everyone around her was very overwhelming. Unfortunately , the apathetic attitude of most schools towards students with special needs is a harsh reality.
How those students who have found their place in an elite school because of certain govt policies, never find a place in the main league is real and understandable. The biases and scorn they face might seem exaggerated at places but is real to some extent.
The performance-wise sections divide that has been shown is absolutely real and followed by most of our schools. It’s not just about those students from the weaker section that is shown in the movie, I think the story raises a pertinent question about this whole performance wise sectioning and divisions that many schools actually follow. The scorn might not be that sharp as in the movie but biases between good scorers and average scorers is a harsh reality. I think the movie has very pertinently brought this up.
This batch of students was lucky to find a Neha Mathur but most just give up and become too obstinate to care.
The constant pressure for grades, percentages, prefect batches , winning competitions and outshining others is turning students into heartless competitive creatures. And the sad fact is that most of the so called good result oriented schools are nurturing this culture. Being successful is a good thing to inculcate in our children but at what cost ? Do the schools even think if they are teaching the right definition of success?
The performances are good. Supriya Pilgaonkar plays Rani ‘s mother. Harsh Mayar plays her brother and was very good. His quiet understanding and unflinching support for his sister was well conveyed even in his little role. Sachin plays her father in a very unimpressive performance.
The actors playing the bunch of kids were all pretty good.
Neeraj Kabi as the snobbish teacher really stood out.
And Rani was an absolute delight . She has proved for the nth time that she’s capable of carrying a film on shoulders and that too with aplomb.
The screenplay was good and engaging. I didn’t feel any sagging bits . The songs were woven well with the narrative and hence a complete support.
I would sum it up as a beautiful little story, a bunch of good performers, lots of motivation, some relatable characters , a pinch of improbabilities, some food for thought, loads of emotions, and a wonderful movie .
Score 8 on 10