Angrezi Medium Movie Review : An emotional story packed with powerful performances
Angrezi Medium Story: Champak Bansal (Irrfan) is a simple, small-town businessman – one of the owner’s of Ghasitaram sweet shop chain – who’s leading a comfortable life with his teenage daughter, Tarika (Radhika Madan). But, Tarika has big dreams – of graduating from a recognised university in London. With little means to fulfil his daughter’s ambition, how far will the father go to ensure Tarika realises her ‘videshi aspirations’?
Angrezi Medium Review: Born and raised in Udaipur (Rajasthan), Champak’s world pretty much revolves around his daily bickering with his other Ghasitaram brother, Gopi (Deepak Dobriyal), and caring for his only daughter, Tarika, who’s all set to graduate high school and embark on another academic journey. But, unlike her father, she doesn’t want to limit her dreams to the place she has grown up in; instead, she wants to explore what lies outside of her small world. Unaware of what’s ahead, Champak gives in to his daughter’s wishes, but things start to spiral out of control when it comes down to paying the hefty fee. A dedicated father, Champak vows to do whatever it takes to send his daughter to study abroad, and treads on a path that not only proves his unconditional love for his ‘betiya’, but also redefines their relationship.
Homi Adajania’s ‘Angrezi Medium’ touches upon the pulse of the young generation’s obsession with pursuing further studies in foreign countries, and their family’s determination to embrace every Himalayan hurdle for their loved ones. There are other underlying themes, too, but this remains the primary subject of the film.
It is a well-known fact that in reality, Irrfan shot this movie while undergoing treatment. But, while watching this film, you can put that thought aside. What you witness on screen is the actor in his element – in every frame. He just takes you along… you laugh with him, cry with him and every time he overcomes an obstacle, you rejoice with him. Irrfan breathes life into Champak in a way that nobody else can. And walking shoulder to shoulder with him is yet another fine actor, Deepak Dobriyal. His camaraderie with Irrfan is a testament to the fact that both of them are such polished, well-prepared actors. Radhika Madan, as this mildly rebellious and often clueless teenager, pulls off a fine performance, especially in the scenes where her movingly beautiful relationship with her father unfolds. Their chemistry is organic, and the portrayal of their respective characters seem so real that their dilemmas and inner conflicts start to resonate. Kiku Sharda, as the childhood buddy of the two brothers, is his usual funny self. Ranvir Shorey, as Balakrishna ‘Bobby’ Tripathy, living the seemingly perfect NRI dream, acts as a catalyst in moving the plot ahead. His depiction of Bobby comes as a refreshing twist in the plot and Shorey does complete justice to his part. Kareena Kapoor Khan does well in her brief appearance as tough cop Naina and adds to the chaos in the second half of the film. However, her relationship with her mother, Mrs. Kohli (played by Dimple Kapadia), is underexplored. It would have been interesting to watch the dynamics of their relationship play out in the movie.
The look and feel of this comedy-drama is all things sweet and small-town – the actors consistently carry a thick local accent (Radhika’s sounds a bit forced though) and close attention has been paid to what we call a ‘small-town traits’ that beautifully plays out in multiple scenes and sequences as the story progresses. With one foot in homeland and the other in London, the music and the background score have been chalked out keeping the two different scenarios in mind; works out fine and differentiates the mood well.
The first half of the screenplay is more engaging then the second, but, while trying to fit in too many subplots, the story goes quite haywire. There are some fantastic moments in the film, and sharply written scenes between the characters, too, which in turn, prove to be the highlights of this drama. However, the story is far too convenient and has inconsistencies that are hard to overlook, but Irrfan’s exceptional performance makes it worth the watch.
‘Angrezi Medium’ does lose its grip on several occasions, what it does not lose is its hold on the emotion that it is trying to bring out, and the message it leaves you with.
|Directed by||Homi Adajania|
|Produced by||Dinesh Vijan|
|Written by||Bhavesh Mandalia|
Kareena Kapoor Khan
|Edited by||A. Sreekar Prasad|
London Calling Production
|Distributed by||Pen India Limited|
|Release date||13 March 2020|
|Running time||145 minutes|
|Budget||₹36 crore Note: figure includes print and advertising costs.)|
|Box office||est. ₹ 13.54 crore|