Genre: Drama, Drama, Thriller
Duration: 148 minutes
India Release Date: 17-JUN-2016
Pick-D-Flick Rating: 3.25 on 5 (Above Average – For its Realism & Powerful Performances)
A story that revolves around drug abuse in the affluent north Indian State of Punjab and how the youth there have succumbed to it en-masse resulting in a socio-economic decline.
Known for his uncoventional films, Anurag Kashyap brings Punjab’s menacing issue of drug abuse on big screen with Udta Punjab. Starring Shahid Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Kareena Kapoor Khan and Diljit Dosanjh, “Udta Punjab”, delves into how the youth in Punjab have succumbed to drugs. The movie is intended to spread awareness about drugs on youth and society in general. Film is high on abusive language and is a realistic emotional journey. It is a well researched story with good performances especially from Shahid Kapoor and Alia Bhat. A good command over Punjabi will help you enjoy this film a lot more. First half of the film has lot of dull moments and lack of connectivity between lives of four people. Second half picks up but fails to do the overall justice to the film. Four intersections viz: World of Police, a heroin addict, a rock star and a doctor is cleverly shown. Despite few flaws, you can still give it a shot to feel the realistic story of Punjab with good performances.
Performance & Technical Review:
Udta Punjab has terrific performances from it’s leading cast. Shahid Kapoor as Tommy is chilling and outstanding. He is a man with a different look, long hair and too many tattoos which proves that he is an accomplished actor and leaves no stone unturned to play the character as real as possible. Bhatt’s performance as a heroin addict is raw and real. Her screams are painfully loud and she doesn’t shy away from being completely vulnerable in front of the camera. Bhangra singer and actor Dosanjh is endearing in his role as a reformed cop. Rajeev Ravi’s cinematography is beautiful where he has captured the stunning locales of Punjab. Music is interesting unlike the film demands and some of the songs, seemed to be doing better over the chart-buster list. The script is simple and straight, which talks about the complications due to the spread of the menace called drugs. The director has tried to keep things simple by focusing over the issue of drugs the way it is spread and is the part of the youth community and how some handful of powerful men leave no stone unturned to keep the business of drugs flowing. But the biggest flaw of the movie is the sequences with lot of hits and misses especially in the first half.
Udta Punjab is well researched truth accompanied with excellent performances. Despite flaws in its script and the execution, Udta Punjab is probably the most honest attempt to take on drug menace. Give it a Shot.
Ratings: 3.25 on 5 (Above Average – For its Realism & Powerful Performances)
Performance: 4 on 5
Script: 3 on 5
Music / Background Score: 3 on 5