In a country, where cinema has to be ‘paisa vasool’, where instead of movies, ‘blockbusters’ are built, where there are no actors but ‘stars’ and where *only* size matters, came a film so endearing, so warm, so personal, and with so much heart, that it’s hardly a surprise that it’s not got the promotion it deserved.
But yet, like the film itself, Udaan has soared above and beyond petty things like ‘hype’ and ‘publicity’, and has embarked on its own flight of fancy since it released last year. Dev D co-writer Vikramaditya Motwane’s directorial debut, Udaan is the kind of movie they don’t make these days anymore. A movie entirely dependent on the story, on emotions, on aspirations and on hope, it’s a far cry from anything Indian cinema has dare made, and credit goes out to producer Anurag Kashyap for making such a movie possible.
Udaan is about a 17-year-old boy, Rohan (Rajat Barmecha), who wants to overcome his middle-class background by following his heart – the heart of a poet. But his authoritarian father, Bhairav Singh (Ronit Roy) wants him to follow his diktats and study to be an engineer, the only profession considered sane enough by the elders of small town India… if at all their sons aspire to be successful.
At its heart, Udaan is a movie about following your dreams. But it’s also a movie ABOUT the heart of India – the small towns – and the dreams and aspirations of its inhabitants. Dreams that may not necessarily be ambitious, but only ambition can help achieve them.
Another remarkable achievement of the film is the way Motwane has skillfully handled relationships – that between a dictatorial father and his teenage son, that between two brothers from extreme schools of thought, that between friends longing to find their own path in life, and the most beautiful one among all these relationships, that between two step brothers just getting to know each other.
It’s not easy to single out one thing in a movie that is outstanding in every way, be it writing, direction, acting, cinematography and music (Amit Trivedi deserves his second National Award already for the landmark soundtrack he’s created for this movie) – but watch this movie especially for the friendship between young, 5-year-old Arjun and his older step-brother, Rohan – and how the purity of such a friendship can rise above all hate, and give way to hope.
Starring: Rajat Barmecha, Ronit Roy, Ram Kapoor, Aayan Boradia, Manjot Singh
Written By: Vikramaditya Motwane and Anurag Kashyap
Directed By: Vikramaditya Motwane
Note: This recommendation first appeared in MTV Noise Factory, July2011 issue
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