14 September 2017 | Reno-Rangan
A love story with not a perfect relationship!
It's a Mani Ratnam film. One of the rare filmmakers, whose films does not need to be analysed or enquired to decide to watch, despite whoever the actors are. The best thing from his flicks are the production quality and this film too had an excellent presentation. Always high standards, even for a simple storyline. A perfect line drawn between reality and cinematic. His films are always a family friendly as this one. This is another love story, but with the backdrop of Indian Air Force during the Kargil war. You should not anticipate more actions, because those parts were only part of the story in a small scale. So it is totally a love tale, though not your regular one. That's the highlight.
Like most of the Ratnam films, this is also a flashback narration. An ace Indian fighter jet pilot, VC, is locked down in a jail after his jet was shot down behind the enemy line. He has to concern for getting out of there alive, instead he begins to recall his romantic life with a doctor named Leela. How they met for the first time and developed their awkward relationship were slowly revealed. The struggle to patch their differences and make it to work. They saw more downs in their relationship than the ups. Now rotting in a prison, VC has to go back to his homeland to locate her and make everything right from where he had left before going to the war.
Jammu and Kashmir, captured, clumsy relationship, does not it remind you something else from the past. Yes, it was like another 'Roja'. Except it was partially inspired by a real event of the 70s. Great direction. The locations were breathtaking. Like never seen before Jammu Kashmir. The performances were not bad at all. Then what's wrong with this flick? It was the screenplay. Not engaging as a theme like this requires. This should have been a 90 minute film. They had dragged it for another 40 minutes, that did not work.
The story was not to be blamed. You won't see such concept in Indian cinema. All the big star's films are the same old storyline with a slight change. This was refreshing, but they let it slip away from the opportunity. Particularly Dileep Kumar's music was a let down. There are many promising musicians today, Ratnam should consider to work with them for a change. As usual, the songs were the disadvantage of the film. But it has always been Ratnam's strength in his storytelling. Here it completely failed. Just one time watchable film. I hope he comes back strong with his next project.