Laal Singh Chaddha ( 2022/ Drama /Cinema)
Writer – Atul Kulkarni
Director – Advait Chandan
Cast – Aamir Khan, Mona Singh, Kareena Kapoor, Manav Vij, Naga Chaitanya
Haven’t seen so much buzz about a movie in recent past. So many weird reasons to boycott it, so many strong emotions about it being a remake and so many tepid reactions to its trailer. I personally belonged to the third category. But being a true blue cinema buff and an Aamir fan , I wasn’t willing to write it off without seeing it, though I had toned down my expectations.
But, I have never been more glad to surpass my own expectations. And my heart proved to my pragmatic self that it’s difficult for an Aamir film to disappoint me and not move me to tears.
Laal Singh Chaddha is as simple a storytelling as its protagonist Laal, with a heart of gold and nothing but good intentions and love.
The film follows a simple graph of flash backs, which take not only Laal’s co-passengers but also us, the audience, on a trip down the memory lane. Those who know of that era might be able to connect better. I might have been a child but have my own memories of many of the milestone events depicted. Very subtle, very unbiased, non leaning narrative that barely touches upon the events but your heart knows what to feel. I appreciate that the screenplay has been very careful but nevertheless doesn’t miss the point.
As far as Laal’s personal story is concerned, there’s nothing new to boast about, no thrills to excite you, but there is a heart winning and extremely overwhelming quality about it. I have lost count the number of times I was moist eyed or shedding tears, and most of the time, I had a warm hearted smile.
Just the simple way Laal’s mom shares her pearls of wisdom and love with him, the fuzzy chemistry that Laal and Rupa shared as kids, their innocent moments , his naivete, his purity of soul , his good intent and silliness, the effect he has on people, everything is moving.
Speaking of performances, I’ll be honest.
There’s nothing new that Aamir shows that he has not already done at least twice before. You’ll see shades of his previous characters.At points you do wish that the actor in him pushes the envelops in terms of expressions. But you must admit that the way he puts his heart and soul in his stories and characters , he more than compensates.
He is extremely intelligent as a film maker. He diverts so much of our emotional energy that we can’t help but overlook his repetitiveness. I admire the passion he puts into a project and it always reflects in the emotional hold his films have over the audience. He is a man who works on his strengths to overcome the weaknesses.I admire him for that too. But one grouse, he drives my tear glands bonkers.
Love Kareena for the ease with which she brightens up the frames and enlivens her characters. She is a natural who doesn’t have to try too hard to get that sway over you.
Mona Singh was good. She plays her character convincingly with aplomb.
I know it’s a little tough to convince the audience to go to theatres, least of all please them.
I know it sounds a tad boring if I say the film is about inherent goodness and purity of soul.
I know it’s difficult to sell a film that is low on excitement in a typical way.
But it has a beautiful message that it drives home well without being preachy.
If you are someone who loves Hindi cinema, if you are someone who can connect to a story despite its simplicity, if you think simple and innocent moments can overwhelm you and if you are someone who likes watching with a heart up the sleeve, then please do give this film a watch.
The team has taken a massive plunge with time, money and efforts. The least they deserve is a chance.
What is most admirable about the film is the way it has been been able to convey its heartwarming message about humanity and love without shouting from rooftops, avoiding any unnecessary passion or rhetorics or agenda.
Laal Singh Chaddha is pure emotions with its heart in the right place. Try lending it your hearts for once.
Score 3.5 on 5