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Monday, July 26, 2010


kahani khatm hai
ya shuruat hone ko hai
subah nayi hai ye
ya phir raat hone ko hai
aanewala waqt
denge panahein
ya phir se milenge dorahein
khabar kya
kya pata

Yet another coming of age story? That's what I asked myself when I learnt about this movie called Udaan making waves at the Cannes. As Anurag Kashyap was backing it - he even said that he wished that he had himself come up with this project on his own in the first place - I had to watch it in the very first weekend of its much awaited release here.

I came out of the screening completely overwhelmed. I was absolutely moved by the storytelling, the performances, the visuals, the music simply mesmerised me.

As the film opens we are gripped by Rohan's character and his discomfort. He is the trapped teenager. Battling odds. Of all kinds. He gets chucked out of the high profile boarding school where his disciplinarian dad with an 'I care a damn' air had conveniently had him relegated. Rohan has to come home now, but the saddest part is that neither his home is what it is meant to be, nor his dad make it easy for him to grapple with his self-discovery. Rohan finds a release in the brilliant poems that he composes, and in carving himself out stealthily from the predetermined choking routine of a life. Rohan soon learns that not only has he to actualise his creative aspirations that are obviously threatened opposition and obstacles, but a rebellion against his emotionally blunt, bully of a father is also the toughest to put up undauntedly. The small town milieu of Jamshedpur, the steel town is breathed to life as brilliantly as the flesh and blood characters. Rohan warms up to his much younger step brother, Arjun, and he finally grows up when he feels responsible for Arjun who is in an even more vulnerable state than him.

Debutant director Vikramaditya Motwane, who has penned the screenplay of the film with help from Anurag Kashyap himself, has done a marvellous job.
The edgy feel is bound to get the viewer thoroughly hooked.
Anurag Kashyap deserves a special pat for having produced this little cinematic gem.
The depiction is magical thanks to a wonderful cast and crew. The editing is crisp, the music has a freshness and a sublime feel to it. The camerawork by Mahendra Shetty is exceptionally fluid.

The film, I am sure, will be talked about for many, many years.... by viewers - young and old.

The cast includes:
Rajat Barmecha (Rohan), Ronit Roy (Rohan's dad), Ram Kapoor (Rohan's uncle), Aayan Boradia (Arjun), along with Manjot Singh, Anand Tiwari, Raja Hudda, Varun Khettry, Sumant Mastkar, Akshay Sachdev, and Shaunak Sengupta.

Written by: Vikramaditya Motwane and Anurag Kashyap
Cinematography: Mahendra Shetty
Music: Amit Trivedi
Lyrics: Amitabh Bhattacharya
Editing: Dipika Kalra
Production design: Aditya Kanwar
Associate producer: Vikas Bahl
Co-producers: Aarti Bajaj,
Siddharth Roy Kapur,
Deven Khote ,
Zarina Mehta ,
Ronnie Screwvala ,
and Sanjay Singh
Executive producer: Dipa Motwane

Let Udaan (means Flight in Hindi) help us all fly without wings.... let us all take flights of creativity,
let our films be realistic,
let them speak of our real fantasies.... and of brave fights in support of our braver pursuits.
And that applies as much to the protagonists, as the makers.
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Siddhu said...

UDAAN is definitely one of the best films that I have ever seen.
Among the Indian films, only RANG DE BASANTI and TAARE ZAMEEN PAR had moved me so much.
I am eagerly awaiting the release of the film on DVD as this is a film that I would love to own in my personal collection.

rachit said...

Thank you for your take on the movie 'Udaan' - it is undoubtedly a landmark film.
Our films are providing the viewers with not only tales of growing up, the films too are showing signs of growth, in every sense. We are no longer hesitant to bring forth telling tales of all kinds that were disregarded even in the recent past as subjects unsuitable for feature films.
I hail the success of 'Udaan' and may the film find even greater viewership globally, as the subject has a universal appeal in spite of being seeped in a certain, and ingrained, local milieu.

saurabh said...

Hey, UDAAN rocks!!!!
It harks back to the times when daring to dream big did not mean having the compulsion to use the aforementioned adverbs of inane emphasis to highlight gossamer-thin dreams with purgatory permissiveness or sugar-coated conformist struggles.... here the passion is all so real, the pains are so vitriolic, the rush of adrenaline is so emancipatory!
UDAAN is evidently a personal story of the director to have seen up-close-and-personal the selfishness and the pettiness in obtuse adults who are ever so zealous to throttle the young voices who can rightfully blossom as tomorrow's fountainheads.
Watching UDAAN was sheer joy! A teenager's tale from Bollywood, without any frilly teenybopper romance thrown in - that's what an unyielding, uncompromising take means! Vikramaditya and Anurag have shown the way. May their lot flourish.

Arunima said...

Thanks for your post on Udaan and also for recommending the film to me! It is such a profoundly positive movie! And it feels so real! As if this is not a movie, but you are actually seeing them in flesh and blood infront of you. Well, I am not a film critic, but if a film makes me wish and pray for a character as he goes through the trials and tribulations, I know the film maker is indeed successful in his vision!

aarav said...

UDAAN is a pastiche of emotions, a coming-of-age story that has so much of freshness and conviction..... it is sure to win the hearts..... I loved it. I chuckled, I cried, I literally cared for the protagonist's ride through life has he all set to expand his wings of creativity and liberate himself in a real sense.

Indravadan said...

Cool review, buddy! Your review has in fact provoked me to watch the film. It's sad that the film did not continue its run in the theaters in Kolkata, in spite of generating a great deal of interest among the cinegoers, as a whole lot of interesting films were being released each Friday, one after the other.
I just wanna say that "Udaan" richly deserves all the accolades and praise.

raj said...

Vikramaditya is finally ready with his much-awaited second film, LOOTERA and this time it is supposedly an intense romance.... whatever that means. The theatrical trailer is so very exciting! I hope I like it as much, if not more, as I liked UDAAN.