Aarakshan Movie Review
Unbiased, Gutsy and Inspirational
Director: Prakash Jha
Cast & Crew: Amitabh Bachchan, Saif Ali Khan, Manoj Bajpai, Deepika Padukone, Shabana Azmi
Plot Summary: Aarakshan is the story of Prabhakar Anand (Amitabh Bachchan), the legendary idealistic principal of a college that he has single-handedly turned into the state’s best. It is the story of his loyal disciple, Deepak Kumar (Saif Ali Khan) who will do anything for his Sir. Of Deepak’s love for Prabhakar’s daughter, Poorbi (Deepika Padukone), of his friendship with Sushant (Prateik). It is the story of their love, their lively friendship, their zest for life, and of their dreams for the future. Centered on one of the most controversial issues of recent years, with the Supreme Court’s order on reservations, the story suddenly becomes a rollercoaster ride of high drama, conflict, and rebellion, which tests their love and friendship for one another, and their loyalty to Prabhakar Anand.
Review: Solid performances, hard hitting subject matter, more than a few tear jerking moments, unbiased treatment. What else do you need in a good film? But film making aside, there is a greater good involved in this film. It’s not just about Reservation and quota and what’s right or wrong. It’s simply about the importance of education and everyone’s right to acquire it. When schools are free and every child is treated as an equal, why wouldn’t there be equal opportunities, right? Hence, it is definitely a film everyone MUST WATCH.
That doesn’t’ mean it’s a perfect film. Yes, the first half has a song too many and the whole film is a little lengthy and exaggerated but that’s all right. Things have to be exaggerated in order to grab attention. Just like in an advertisement – you have to exaggerate it to sell anything…but that doesn’t mean the product is any less potent or doesn’t do the job.
Simply put, ‘Aarakshan’ is about Prabhakar Anand (Amitabh Bachchan), the legendary idealistic principal of a college that he has single-handedly turned into the states best. Anand is seen caught in between a world for and against Reservation. Centered around one of the most controversial issues of recent years, with the Supreme Court’s order on reservations, the story suddenly becomes a rollercoaster ride of high drama, conflict and rebellion. Deepak Kumar (Saif Ali Khan) a Dalit junior professor & Sushant (Prateik), the son of the rich college trustee, former friends; now find themselves fighting on two sides of the issue that threatens to ruin much more that their friendship. Poorbhi (Deepika) is Prabhaar Anand’s daughter, who gets caught between loyalty for her Father and her love for Deepak.
How do all of them find a way out of this dangerous and painful situation? And yes, they do find a rather inspirational solution. Watch to find out.
The solid performance that each cast member pulled off definitely adds weightage to the film. Saif is sincere and bankable as usual. Deepika manages well given her limited range. Manoj Bajpayee and the rest of the cast fit perfectly well in their OTT roles. No prizes for guessing that Amitabh Bachchan as the idealistic and principled old man is the hook, line and sinker for the film.
In short, an absolute must watch. Kudos Mr. Prakash Jha for your guts and sincerity.
Verdict: Our education system needs a revolution. This film has the potential to start one.