After being publicised as a film which would be almost on par with Khuda Kay Liye, Ramchand Pakistani generates enough curiosity among its audiences on this festive weekend. Mehreen Jabbar attempts to portray the trauma of Hindu Dalit family which is based in Pakistan.
The story revolves around Ramchand (Syed Fazal Hussain), and his parents Shankar (Rashid Farooqui) and Champa (Nandita Das). Ramchand lives n Pakistan,but in a village which is on the Indian border. One day he and his father happen to accidentally enter India through the open border and this is where the trauma begins for them. They are arrested under charges of spying and are put behind bars for 5 long years.How they undergo this difficult phase and at the same time how the mother longs for her son to come back, is what forms the basic plot. The hardships that all three face, the former two being in prison and the fight for survival by Champa is effectively portrayed.
The film is based on a true life story, and is very sensitive and heart- wrenching. Though it does not match upto the standards of Khuda Kay Liye, it still manages to carve a niche of its own. The script is taut at major places, though it does tend to get a little slow at times. The story is conveyed with simplicity and successfully manages to display all the emotions it intends to reach forth the audience with, be it anger, jealousy, frustration, pathos etc. The transformation of Ramchand’s character and the emotional bonding that he shares with his father during this period, touch a chord. Also notable is the relationship that Ramchand shares with his warden in prison. These are scenes to watch out for. Champa’s struggle in the absence of the bread winner of the family and the grief of having lost her only son is brought out well on screen.
Rashid Farooqui are competent in their roles and remain etched in your mind, long after you are out of the cinema hall. Another performance that leaves a mark is Maria Wasti, who plays the hostile turned loving warden.
Mehreen Jabbar’s directorial debut leaves an impact on the audience. The cinematography and camera work deserve a special mention, more so because the makers have claimed to have used few actual locations. Music does not live upto the expactations that one would have from this genre of cinema.
“So bol meri filmi khopdi, is film mein kitna hai dum”
Dum to kaafi hain, in some places though it goes a little weak. But it is indeed watchable for its performances and a gripping storyline.
Rating : 3.25 on 5